Import and sale of raw oysters harvested in zone 50.14 in Manche in France suspended


Hong Kong (HKSAR) -      The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department announced today (February 23) that import into and sale within Hong Kong of raw oysters harvested in zone 50.14 in Manche in France has been suspended with immediate effect.
      
     A spokesman for the CFS said, "The CFS received a notification from the Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) of the European Commission that raw oysters harvested in the above-mentioned area were found to be contaminatedwith norovirus and are under recall. For the sake of prudence, the CFS has immediately suspended the import into and sale within Hong Kong of all raw oysters harvested in the area concerned."
      
     According to the information provided by the RASFF, a small quantity of raw oysters harvested in the area concerned were imported into Hong Kong. The CFS is conducting follow-up investigation.
      
     "As oysters feed by filtering a large volume of seawater, pathogens (such as norovirus), chemical contaminants or natural toxins can accumulate in them if they are grown in or harvested from contaminated water.

Regardless of the season or the region in which the oysters are harvested, consuming oysters, particularly raw or partially cooked ones, carries an inherent food safety risk. Susceptible groups, such as pregnant women, young children, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems or liver diseases, should avoid eating raw oysters," the spokesman said.
      
     The CFS will inform the French authorities of the import suspension and will also notify the local trade. It will continue to follow up on the incident and take appropriate action to safeguard food safety and public health.

Investigation is ongoing.
     



Published on: 2018-02-23

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