Court Enjoins Seafood Processing Company, Owners

lobsters

Injunction is result of FDA enforcement action to protect seafood safety

WASHINGTON (RushPRnews) 02/24/09-At the request of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota on Feb. 17, 2009, entered an order of permanent injunction against seafood processor Captain’s Select Seafood Inc., Minneapolis, Minn., and its co-owners Carolyn M. Young and William J. Young.

<The defendants are charged with repeatedly violating the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) and the FDA’s Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) regulations for seafood processors.

The court held that the evidence presented by the FDA showed a lengthy and undisputed history of violations from 2004 through at least early 2008, during which time Captain’s Select did not have a HACCP plan that complied with the FDA’s regulations. The FDA’s HACCP regulations require that all seafood processors develop and implement adequate plans that identify all food safety hazards likely to occur for each kind of seafood product, and contain preventative measures that the processor can implement to control those hazards. The court held that failure to have a compliant HACCP plan established that the defendants violated the FD&C Act on countless occasions by handling food in a manner that rendered it adulterated.

“While there are no reported illnesses associated with consuming Captain’s Select Seafood products, we cannot allow a company to put the public’s health at risk by not having adequate procedures and plans to produce safe food,” said Michael Chappell, the FDA’s acting associate commissioner for regulatory affairs. “The FDA will take action against companies and against their executives who violate the law and endanger public health.”

The order of permanent injunction requires that either the FDA or a federal district court must first approve the defendants’ HACCP plans before any of the defendants can resume operating any food-supply business, or any food-related business involving seafood.

Should consumers have any food safety questions, they can call the FDA’s toll-free Food Safety Hotline at (888) SAFEFOOD, and they can report any problems to the FDA consumer complaint coordinator in their geographic area. Contact numbers may be found on-line at www.fda.gov/opacom/backgrounders/complain.html.

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