THE public has been warned not to gather shellfish in the Castlemaine Harbour area for personal consumption due to the presence of a marine toxin, Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP), which can cause serious illness.
PSP was detected during routine testing as part of Ireland’s shellfish monitoring programme which is managed by the Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority with the Marine Institute and provides an early warning system for the presence of potential toxins.
Additionally, shellfish growing areas in the south west and west coasts are also experiencing high levels of diarrheic shellfish poisoning which has led to a number of areas being closed for harvesting until these toxic events pass.
Restaurants and other food businesses have been asked to buy from approved suppliers only.
Phytoplankton upon which bivalve molluscs such as oysters, mussels, clams and cockles feed, is occasionally blighted by blooms of species that produce toxins which do not harm the shellfish but can cause illness in humans when contaminated shellfish is eaten.
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