A recent outbreak of Salmonella in frozen tuna might have sushi lovers wondering if it's safe to eat that raw fish.
The outbreak in question began in California in March. All told, it sickened 65 people in 11 states. There were 35 cases in California, with another 18 in Arizona and New Mexico. The rest of the cases were scattered across the country, including four in Minnesota.
Most of the victims interviewed by public health investigators said they'd eaten sushi made with raw tuna in the week before they became ill. It was the Minnesota Department of Health that discovered the outbreak strains of Salmonella in some frozen raw tuna imported from Indonesia. The California importer, Osamu Corp., had shipped the frozen tuna to sushi restaurants and grocery stores that make sushi throughout the U.S.
In late August, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that the outbreak was over. But the agency warned that some of the recalled tuna might still be lurking in the freezers of restaurants uninformed about the outbreak, so people could still get sick.
It's not unheard of for Salmonella to contaminate raw tuna. The pathogen strain linked to this year's outbreak has been linked to raw tuna before. And in 2012, another strain of Salmonella linked to frozen, pre-packaged raw tuna sickened 425 people.