Oyster Warning for Castlemaine Production Area

Monday, 29 June 2020

Following the detection of significant levels of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) in oyster samples from the Castlemaine production area in the South West of Ireland, the Food Safety Authority of Ireland, in conjunction with the Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority, the Health Service Executive and the Marine Institute, is warning people not to collect or take oysters from this area at this time. Food businesses are warned to only source oysters, mussels and other shellfish from reputable suppliers.

PSP is caused by a naturally occurring toxin associated with certain algal blooms in Irish coastal waters. This means that levels of the toxin associated with PSP can increase rapidly in shellfish, where they feed on these algal blooms. At sufficiently high levels, PSP can be fatal in humans.

The production area is now closed and is being monitored by the Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority and the Marine Institute. The results from this monitoring will be published in the Marine Institute's Harmful Algal Bloom Shellfish Monitoring Programme.