Iceland – Warning against consuming mussels from Hvalfjörður – Algal Toxins


Matvælastofnun continues to warn against picking and consuming mussels from Hvalfjörður, as DSP algae toxins were recently detected above the reference limits.  

DSP algae toxins in mussels can cause abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. Symptoms appear soon after consumption and disappear within a few days. 

A representative of the Food Administration collected mussels on Friday 22 October at Fossá in Hvalfjörður. The purpose was to investigate whether it was safe for the public to pick mussels in Hvalfjörður. The results of the measurements showed that the DSP algae toxin was 440 µg / kg but a month ago 1150 µg / kg was measured in the mussel. Both values ​​are well above the limit of 160 µg / kg. 

Consumers are still warned not to eat mussels from the fjord as things stand. The agency will continue to monitor the situation and let them know when it will be safe to eat mussels from the fjord. During the winter, sampling is monthly, as algae growth is slow during the dark winter months and algae toxicity changes are slower. 

Finally, the Food Administration would like to draw attention to the fact that there is always a risk involved in consuming shellfish collected during shell picking, and this is always at your own risk.  

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