Frozen raccoon? Aisle three.
The Los Angeles County Health Department has stepped in after a shopper noticed an unusual item in a Temple City Asian supermarket’s frozen foods section: entire raccoons.
Customer Christina Dow spotted the raccoons, and, like any savvy 21st-century shopper, whipped out her cellphone and took a video that she shared on social media, using several expletives to describe her find.
“The way it’s packaged in the store, it’s so real, and it’s so fresh, and you don’t see chickens with their feathers and blood all over them, and their expression, with their tongue hanging out,” she told KCBS-TV (Apparently, raccoon meat is considered a delicacy in China.)
Dow also contacted the health department, which paid Metro Super Market a visit. The market agreed to stop selling the nocturnal wildlife until the department has reviewed and officially sanctioned the sale.
According to the health department, selling raccoons as food may be perfectly legal, depending on the source of the meat. (Wild-caught or shot "game" meat generally can't be sold in the U.S.; it has to be farm-raised.)
Store employees told KCBS that they’ve been selling raccoons for several years with no issues until now. When contacted by the Los Angeles Times, a spokesperson at Metro Super Market said, “We don’t have any raccoon now. Those were samples. The health department already picked them up. I don’t know anything about it,” before hanging up. (The health department could not be reached for comment.)
But seriously, $9.99 a pound? That means an average 5 1/2-pound raccoon would set you back about $55. We’re not paying more for raccoon than we are for Berkshire pork. We’re just not.