Beware of crab meat from Venezuela following outbreak

Warnings have been issued not to eat fresh crab meat imported from Venezuela because it’s likely the source of an outbreak  linked to infections of Vibrio parahaemolyticus, an illness commonly associated with eating raw or under cooked shellfish.

The outbreak has sickened 12 people in three states, with four of those requiring hospitalization, according to CDC.

Infected people were found in Maryland, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia.

The CDC warns, “CDC recommends that consumers not eat, restaurants not serve, and retailers not sell precooked fresh crab meat imported from Venezuela until further notice. This type of product may be labeled as fresh or precooked. It is commonly found in plastic containers. Food contaminated with Vibrio usually looks, smells, and tastes normal.”

“If you buy crab meat and do not know whether it is from Venezuela, do not eat, serve, or sell it. Throw it away.”

Doctors say the infection strikes within a day, with symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting and stomachaches.

Doctors suggest washing of hands and cutting boards with hot water and soap before handling food.

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