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Wild shellfish alert on Tassie east coast

March 19, 2016
Latest News

Wild shellfish alert on Tassie east coast

Public health authorities have warned people not to collect or eat wild-harvested shellfish from Tasmania’s east coast after a toxin was detected in shellfish.

Acting Director of Public Health Dr Mark Veitch said Diarrhetic Shellfish Toxin (DST) has been detected in mussels from Mercury Passage, on Tasmania’s east coast.

As a result of this detection, Spring Bay Mussels has recalled supplies of its Live Fresh Australian Blue Mussels.

The products are branded Spring Bay Live Blue Mussels with Use-By-Dates including 22 to 27 March 2016, sold either loose or in 1kg or 2kg vacuum packed bags and 1kg Net bags.

Further information is available at Food Standards Australia

Consumers should not eat this product, which can be returned to the place of purchase for a full refund.

“DST is produced by naturally occurring algae and may cause diarrhoea, stomach pain, nausea and vomiting,” Dr Veitch said.

“Symptoms start from 30 minutes to several hours after eating affected shellfish; cases recover within a day or so.”

“DST poisoning usually does not cause serious illness, but anyone concerned by their symptoms should seek medical help,” Dr Veitch said.

Dr Veitch said the affected shellfish appeared healthy and tasted normal.

He warned the toxin was not destroyed by cooking.

DST was also detected at lower levels in the last month in oysters from several east coast sites.

“These findings are a reminder that it is particularly risky to harvest and eat wild bivalve shellfish.

“Do not collect and eat wild shellfish including oysters (pacific and native), mussels, scallops, clams, pipis, cockles and wedge shells.

Published by: DHHS Tasmania

19 March 2016