Australia -Twofold Bay area algal toxin alert – update

NSW

NSW DPI advises that recent test results show that levels of Paralytic Shellfish Toxin (PST) in commercially cultivated mussels sampled from Twofold Bay have dropped below the level of concern for human consumption. Commercial mussel harvest in Twofold Bay has recommenced under a stringent monitoring program.

Animals such as rock lobsters purge the toxin at a slower rate than mussels. It is recommended that people avoid the consumption of rock lobsters and abalone from the Twofold Bay area until 1 January 2017.

Lobsters and abalone are known to accumulate the toxin in the viscera (tomalley) of rock lobsters and the viscera and mantle of abalone. It is recommended that consumption of viscera from crustaceans and gastropods captured from Twofold Bay is avoided. The mantle of abalone should either be removed or scrubbed clean to remove any pigment. As a precaution people should also avoid harvesting or consuming sea urchins from the area. Paralytic shellfish toxins are produced by certain toxic algae species. Alexandrium species that can produce paralytic shellfish toxins are continuing to bloom in the Twofold Bay area.Shellfish taken from this area should not be eaten. Cooking does not destroy the toxins.

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