Washington state oysters contaminated with a toxin commonly known as "red tide" were shipped to Boise, Lewiston, Coeur d'Alene and Pocatello, state health officials discovered Friday.
If eaten, the oysters may cause paralytic shellfish poisoning, which can be fatal. However, no deaths have been reported in this case, said Mary Keltz, a spokeswoman for the Idaho Health and Welfare Department.Minterbrook Oyster Co., Gig Harbor, Wash., shipped the oysters in 10-ounce jars and half-gallon containers for home or restaurant use, she said, adding that officials were unsure of the quantity of toxic oysters shipped to Idaho.
Wholesalers include the Idaho Fish Co., with operations in Boise and Pocatello, Keltz said.
Consumers and restaurants were being advised to return any suspect oysters to where they bought them. Labels on the bad lots contain "pull dates" of Oct. 7 through Oct. 26, she said.
Earlier this week, contaminated oysters were located in Idaho Falls. Washington state officials notified the Idaho Health and Welfare Department Friday that the distribution was widespread, Keltz said.
Symptoms of paralytic shellfish poisoning usually develop within 30 minutes and include tingling, numbness and burning of the mouth, lips and tongue. Those symptoms may spread to the face, scalp, neck fingertips and toes.