Calif. health officials warn of cactus with unapproved pesticides

Shown are various foods and beverages prepared with cactus in Dallas, Monday, July 9, 2001. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

February 16, 2014 6:49:53 PM PST
California public health officials are warning people not to eat a certain brand of cactus because of the presence of unapproved pesticides.

The cactus was sold at two locations in the East Bay -- at La Superior Supermercado in Pittsburg and at Mercado del Valle in Concord.

The product, imported from Mexico, was sold in bulk bins without any specific labeling or branding.

The state Department of Public Health said Sunday that a recent inspection of the cactus found traces of Monocrotophos, a pesticide that has been barred from use in the United States since 1989. Consumption of the pesticide can lead to neurotoxicity and permanent nerve damage.

The department is urging anyone who bought the contaminated product at the following stores between Feb. 6 and 12 to return it or get rid of it.

For detailed information on the warning from health officials, click here.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)