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Research Needed On Fish And Shellfish Safety

SCOTLAND, UK - The Food Standards Agency in Scotland is commissioning five pieces of research that will help gather evidence to improve the hygiene standards of fish and shellfish consumed in Scotland.

The areas of research are to:

  • review the processes in place throughout the processing chain that are designed to control the formation of histamine in at-risk fish species
  • investigate the prevalence of parasitic nematodes in commercially-farmed marine fish in Scotland and to review current farming practices
  • carry out a survey of biotoxins in Scottish whole king scallops to assess whether current controls are effective in protecting public health
  • develop specific methods to detect and monitor toxin-producing phytoplankton species and determine their seasonal abundance
  • assess the impacts of heavy rainfall and other environmental impacts on E. coli levels in shellfish

Additionally, further research is needed to improve the understanding of E.coli O157 colonisation in cattle and the factors that make some animals excrete larger than normal numbers of bacteria, also known as ‘supershedders’. The Agency is requesting applications for individuals to organise and facilitate a workshop to identify the key areas where research is needed.

the Fish Site Editor

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