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Shellfish Safety Talk by WA DOH

July 19, 2022 @ 7:00 pm 8:00 pm

Digging for Dinner Safely and Understanding Beach Closures for Shellfish Harvesting

Join the Sound Water Stewards of Island County on Tuesday, July 19, 2022 at 7pm for a talk by Jerry Borchert, WA Department of Health (WDOH), Marine Biotoxins Program


Washington has a reputation for safe, wholesome shellfish. Miles of Puget Sound shoreline and Washington coastal beaches attract hundreds of thousands of recreational harvesters each year.

WDOH regularly tests bivalve molluscan shellfish and the water where they grow to make sure the shellfish are safe to eat. They also license and inspect commercial shellfish operations to make sure shellfish intended for markets and restaurants are safe.

Action is taken when conditions pose a threat to public health. Why has Saratoga Passage been closed since last August, initially for all shellfish and currently for butter and varnish clams? Whatcom and San Juan counties have recently been closed for all shellfish harvesting.

In the recording below, Jerry Borchert of WDOH talks about monitoring shellfish tissue for the presence of biotoxins. The WDOH marine biotoxin monitoring program is the largest in the United States.

Brought to you by the Sound Toxins team at Sound Water Stewards.

Note: SWS annual summer classes, Digging4Dinner, are on hold while we continue to monitor the Shellfish Safety Map. Learn more about Shellfish Safety in this live zoom talk.

Please share the link to this page with anyone who would be interested.