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PIA Press Release

Sorsogon Bay positive anew for red tide

by BA Recebido

Sorsogon City (15 July) -- Shellfish Bulletin No. 15 issued by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) dated July 8, 2010 strongly advices the public that all types of shellfish and Acetes sp. or "alamang" gathered from Sorsogon Bay are now again unsafe for human consumption.

BFAR bulletin says that based on the latest laboratory results of the red tide monitoring activities conducted by the agency and Office of the City and Provincial Agriculturist, shellfish samples collected from Sorsogon Bay are now positive anew of the red tide toxin.

"Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxin level in shellfish sample collected from the said area is 86ugSTXeq/100g of shellfish meat, thus, to avoid PSP, the public is advised to refrain from eating, gathering or harvesting, transporting and marketing shellfish from the said bay until such time that the shellfish toxicity level has gone down below the regulatory limit of 60ugSTXeq/100g of shellfish meat," says the advisory.

However, BFAR also made it clear that fish harvested from Sorsogon Bay are safe for human consumption provided that they are fresh and washed thoroughly and their internal organs such as gills and intestines are removed before cooking.

Sorsogon Bay was last declared negative of the red tide toxin in March this year and yet again declared positive on July 8, barely after four months of being dormant.

Following the declaration, local residents dependent on shellfish industry here expressed dismayed especially that some are starting to recover from previous economic losses while some has reactivated their green mussel pens.

The imposition of shellfish ban in 2006 due to recurrent occurrence of red tide hurt thousands of local residents dependent on the shellfish industry.

Meanwhile, it can be noted that BFAR Officer In-Charge Gil Ramos in his previous interviews reminded the public to remain on guard since there will always be a high possibility of re-occurrence of harmful algal bloom or red tide to previously contaminated coastal waters like Sorsogon Bay adding also that the changing weather and temperature are contributory factors.

BFAR along with the City and Provincial Agriculture Office of Sorsogon are still continuously monitoring Sorsogon Bay to safeguard public health and to protect the fishery industry.

They also appeal to the public to take necessary precautions and be kept updated of the latest results of their regular monitoring activities. (PIA Sorsogon) [top]

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