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Listeria scare shuts down seafood plant

By Jenni Spinner+


The FDA has shut down a Seattle fish processor after finding L. mono during a routine inspection.
The FDA has shut down a Seattle fish processor after finding L. mono during a routine inspection.

The FDA has ordered Jensen’s Old Fashioned Smokehouse to close its doors after the seafood processor tested positive for the presence of Listeria monocytogenes.

US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspectors turned up Listeria monocytogenes (L. mono) after analyzing samples collected during a routine inspection at the Jensens Seattle facility. The pathogen reportedly was found in food processing and storage areas at the plant.

As a result of the FDA order, Jensen’s has been barred from processing, preparing, packing, holding, or distributing all food product at its plant. No illnesses have been reported to date.

Consent decree

The processor is under a consent decree of permanent injunction, which was entered by the US District Court for the Western District of Washington in 2001. Under the terms of that arrangement, the company agreed control food safety hazards and ensure unadulterated product.

After the recent inspection, the FDA determined the food in the Jensen’s facility was adulterated, subsequently issuing an order to cease operations under consent decree’s terms.

Representatives Jensen’s Old Fashioned Smokehouse could not be reached for comment.

Previous tests

The Jensen’s facility has had other brushes with the FDA in the past.

In September 2007, containers of two varieties of salmon spread (produced at a nearby contract processor) were recalled due to L. mono concerns; another recall of the spread occurred one month later.

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