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Processor recalls 69,000 pounds of catfish

By Jack Weatherly

Heartland Catfish Co. of Itta Bena recalled about 69,000 pounds of catfish that may have been exposed to a fungicide that carries a low-level health risk to consumers.

The USDA’s Food and Safety Inspection Service announced on Friday the recall was Heartland catfish shipped to retailers in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Texas and Vermont.

None was shipped in Mississippi, the company said.

The fish was shipped in 15- and 30-pound packages, according to the USDA.

“While there have been no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products and the USDA notes the risk for such reactions is low, we chose to voluntarily recall the product out of an abundance of caution and concern for consumer safety,” Jonathan Mills of Heartland said in an email.

“All affected retailers have been contacted and the product has been removed from retail shelves,” Mills said.

The USDA discovered the problem on March 8 “after routine sampling revealed violative levels of the chemical leucomalachite green in the products,” the agency said in a release.

“A remote possibility for adverse health consequences means that the product may cause illness, but not fatalities if consumed,” the agency said in an email in response to a query by the Mississippi Business Journal.

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