Raw Molluscan Shellfish

National Shellfish Sanitation Program: Guide for the Control of Molluscan Shellfish 2007, Section III. Public Health Reasons and Explanations.

This section of the latest version of the NSSP Molluscan Shellfish Control Manual provides a public health explanation and rationale for each of the required components of this national food safety control program. A description and rationale for requirements of state shellfish control authorities, bacteriological standards for monitoring water quality and classifying harvest waters, requirements for dealers and processors, and for depuration are included. To view this section and/or the entire 2007 NSSP Control Manual click here.

SafeOysters.org – Internet Resources and Reference for healthcare Providers on Oysters and Vibrio vulnificus.

This Website developed by seafood specialists at the Universities of Georgia and California-Davis contains a comprehensive list of Internet resources and published journal references on oysters with an emphasis on the pathogen Vibrio vulnificus. Internet resources include those available from the American Medical Association, Centers for Disease Control, Food and Drug Administration, and the Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference. References focus on public health, mode of infection, high risk individuals, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment. To view this Internet resource click here.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration – Food borne Pathogenic Microorganisms and Natural Toxins Handbook (Bad Bug Book)

This FDA Handbook provides information on the illnesses caused by bacterial and viral agents that could be associated with raw molluscan shellfish includingVibrio cholera, Vibrio parahaemolyticus, and Vibrio vulnificus, Salmonella, E. coli, Shigella, and enteric viruses like Hepatitis A and the Norwalk virus group. Included is information on each of these organisms, food vehicles, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment, and high risk groups. To see this resource click here

Microbial Contamination of Shellfish: Prevalence, Risk to Human Health, and Control Strategies, R. J. Wittman and G. J. Flick. Annual Review of Public Health, 1995, 16:123-40.

Abstract: There has been significant concern in recent times about the safety of molluscan shellfish for human consumption. Despite extensive efforts to assure a safe supply of molluscan shellfish, the number of cases of disease and death are still great enough to cause concern among the public. The number of cases of illness and death associated with the ingestion of shellfish falls in the lower end of the range of other similar microbial pathogen-related food borne disease. Disease and deaths due to viruses and naturally occurring bacteria are now of greatest concern because they are the most often cited causative agents. The greatest risk of disease or death due to shellfish consumption is among the population with underlying health conditions who choose to consume raw shellfish. Control strategies to limit shellfish-borne disease should focus upon disease and death caused by viruses and naturally occurring bacteria among at-risk populations. To view this article click here.