Environmental Health issues shellfish warning

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Published Date: 

11 Oct 2016 - 15:35

Routine shellfish toxin monitoring work by Argyll and Bute Council’s Environmental Health service has identified raised levels of naturally-occurring algal toxins in an area of Argyll and Bute.

These naturally-occurring toxins accumulate in molluscs such as mussels, oysters, cockles and razor clams and, when levels breach statutory limits, harvesting of affected species is prohibited. 

The following area currently has toxins levels above the legally permitted limits for harvest and therefore remains closed is:

  • Loch Striven

The recent classification document for shellfish harvesting areas in Scotland has also identified a potential risk of raised levels of Escherichia coli (E.coli) bacteria at the following sites in Argyll and Bute:

Loch Creran

Common cockles

>4601 E.coli/100g

Loch na Cille

Common cockles

>4601 E.coli/100g

Loch Riddon

Common cockles

>4601 E.coli/100g

Monitoring work undertaken by the council’s Environmental Health service has identified raised levels of Escherichia coli (E.coli) bacteria at the following site:


Common cockles

9200 E.coli/100g

Eating shellfish such as cockles, mussels, oysters or razor fish from these areas may pose a risk to human health and notices to warn the public and casual gatherers have been posted at various locations on the shore.

Commercial shellfish harvesters in these areas have been contacted by the council and steps taken to postpone harvesting until bacterial levels subside.

It is a sensible precaution to avoid eating shellfish from this area until further notice. When the situation subsides, the warning notes etc. will be removed.

For further information please contact Regulatory Services on 01631 567849 or Food Standards Scotland on 01224 285 100.