The US food and Drug Administration has issued a consent decree to California seafood processor Yamaya USA due to concerns over Listeria monocytogenes bacteria.
Yamaya has agreed to the FDA’s request to stop manufacturing or distributing fish products until it corrects conditions at its processing facility. It also must destroy all food currently in process or ready for shipment and clean and sanitize the facility until laboratory results confirm no further L. mono contamination.
No illnesses have been reported to date implicating Yamaya’s product, but the company allegedly prepared and processed fish and fish products under conditions that contributed to widespread L. mono contamination in its facility, according to a complaint filed by the Department of Justice on behalf of the FDA.
The complaint alleges that Yamaya also failed to comply with FDA’s current good manufacturing practice (CGMP) and seafood hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) regulations.
Listeriosis, a serious infection usually caused by eating food contaminated with L. mono, is a public health problem in the United States, where it causes nearly 2,500 cases of listeriosis per year. Although harmless in most healthy people, the pathogen poses a serious threat to pregnant women, newborns and individuals with weakened immune systems. People without these risk factors can also be affected.
Under the terms of the consent decree, Yamaya must meet several FDA food safety requirements before it can resume manufacturing and distributing fish and fish products.