FDA shuts down Maryland
seafood processor's ops
Jan 11, 2010 8:51 AM
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that a Maryland seafood processor delivering fresh, frozen, and ready-to-eat seafood in Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Washington DC is to stop processing and distributing adulterated fish and seafood because it is not compliant with federal food safety laws.
The Congressional Seafood Company Inc of Jessup MD and three of its executives were cited by FDA for failing to follow the agency’s Seafood Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) regulations in the handling of products including raw, ready-to-eat tuna for sushi and sashimi, fresh and vacuum-packed crabmeat, frozen octopus and shrimp, and molluscan shellfish.
Violations included failure to document that fish were refrigerated at appropriate temperatures, failure to keep fish species separate to avoid cross-contamination, failure to meet sanitation standards or keep records of compliance, and failure to verify that imported fish met FDA standards.
FDA filed a consent decree of permanent injunction in the US District Court for the District of Maryland. The decree, signed by US District Judge Benson E Legg, applies to the firm and company President Stanley S Pearlman, Vice President Jonathan D Pearlman, and HACCP Coordinator Stephen G Bardsley. The decree with Congressional Seafood also bars former company President Thomas P Spencer from any involvement in management or operations of the firm.
Under the decree, to become compliant with food safety laws, Congressional Seafood must have its HACCP and sanitation plans submitted by an independent expert and approved by FDA.
The decree allows FDA to shut down Congressional Seafood, recall its products, or take other corrective action in the event of future violations. It requires the defendants to pay the costs of inspections performed pursuant to the decree. Failure to abide by the agreement can lead to civil or criminal penalties.
Call 888-INFO-FDA for more information.
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