Grupo Día, which has 7,400 stores, has recalled a batch of canned sardines in olive oil in Spain and Portugal because of botulinum toxin.

The product comes from Portugal and was distributed in Spain. No illnesses have been reported.

Foodborne botulism, caused by eating food that was improperly processed or held at improper temperatures, is rare but potentially fatal if not diagnosed rapidly and treated with antitoxin.

Grupo Día officials said the withdrawal is a precautionary measure due to a possible sterilization defect.

The Spanish multinational company specializes in the distribution of food, household and personal care products. It operates in Spain, Portugal, Argentina, Brazil and China with almost 7,400 stores.

The Spanish Agency for Consumer Affairs, Food Safety and Nutrition (AECOSAN) issued a statement saying it had learnt that more than 24,500 cans of sardines had been recalled.

Information was transferred to the agency by the health authorities of Madrid through the Coordinated System of Rapid Information Exchange (SCIRI), a system through which the agency has informed other national contact points.

The affected batch is manufactured by Cofisa, Conservas de Peixe de Figueira S.A. with lot 2694L and date until July 2023. It was distributed in Portugal and Spain. The recall comes as a result of periodic analyzes that the company carries out on all the products it sells.

Grupo Día asked customers who have purchased product from this batch to return it to the nearest store.

Botulism is caused by toxins produced by Clostridium botulinum bacteria. It can quickly paralyze muscles, including those used to breath. Immediate medical attention is required. Onset of symptoms varies from a few hours to several days after exposure to the bacteria or toxins. Symptoms can also include blurred or double vision, facial muscle weakness, difficulty swallowing, slurred speech and breathing difficulties.

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