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Bloomberg Health Alert: Tofu Blamed For Two Cases of Botulism

Ok, we're going to make an important distinction here: Tofu is funny. Botulism, not so funny.

Tofu is a soy-based, largely flavorless paste that can be molded into interesting shapes.

Botulism is a scary bacterial disease which causes cramps, choking, nausea and vomiting before death.

Well, the city Health Department in a late Friday afternoon press release says it has linked two recent cases of botulism to tofu sold from a store in the Flushing section of Queens. It is advising New Yorkers to dump all fresh bulk tofu sold from a city store where it was being kept at room temperature, and to toss all tofu and fermented tofu stored without refrigeration at home.

There has only been one other documented case of botulism in the city in the past 15 years. Both patients under treatment are Chinese-speaking Flushing residents, officials said. They did not provide details of their current medical condition. No one was available from DOH last night to comment.


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