On Thursday, a California company announced a voluntarily recall of several thousand pounds of frozen monkfish from China, after two people became sick from eating what officials believe may have been toxic puffer fish.
The fish was labeled as monkish; however federal agents have found life threatening levels of tetrodotoxin in the fish, which is commonly associated with puffer fish.
Both people that became sick on the fish had eaten in homemade soup. According to the FDA, one of the two people was hospitalized.
The FDA warned consumers not to eat or buy any fish labeled as monkish, as it might be mislabeled. Ingesting the fish can result in death or serious illness, officials said.
Hong Chang Corp. of Santa Fe Springs began a voluntary recall of the frozen fish, which was sold in September to wholesalers in Illinois, California and Hawaii. The company shipped 282 boxes, with 22 pounds of frozen fish in each box.
The boxes were labeled, “Monk fish, gutted and head off, Product of China,” the company said. The product was sold to restaurants and stores.
Puffer fish, also known as fugu, is a delicacy in Japan. Chefs must be licensed and usually undergo at least two years of training on how to safely remove the toxic parts of the fish.
The fish recall is the latest of food problems from China, a leading exporter of food. In March, pet food ingredients from China were blamed for the deaths of over 4,000 cats and dogs in the United States and Canada.