FDA warning on lobsters

July 29, 2008 6:46:26 AM PDT
It's not the most appetizing part of the lobster, and now the government is warning that the soft, green substance in the crustacean's body cavity could be toxic.

The Food and Drug Administration says it's still OK to eat the white meat in the claws and tails, but the substance known as tomalley should be avoided.

A red tide, or algae bloom, sprouted from Northern New England to Canada this year, contaminating fishing grounds with high levels of toxins that cause paralytic shellfish poisoning. Symptoms only take hours to appear and include tingling and numbness of the mouth, face or neck, muscle weakness, headache and nausea.

The warning applies to American lobster, also known as Maine lobster, which is harvested in Atlantic waters from Canada to South Carolina.