Frozen scallops found to contain PSP toxin (with photo)

A prepackaged frozen half-shell scallop sample taken recently by the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) was found to contain Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxin, at a level of 114 micrograms/100 grams.

Details of the concerned product are as follows:

Product: Scallop, Roe-On, Half-shell
Use by: 31-12-2010
Weight: 0.88 pounds
Product number(貨號): 14272
Sampling location: Kai Bo Food Supermarket, Shop no. 17G1, G/F, United Bldg., 1-7 Wu Kwong Street, Hung Hom, Kowloon.

"PSP toxin can cause symptoms such as numbness of mouth and limbs and gastrointestinal discomfort. In severe cases, paralysis with respiratory arrest and even death may occur." a CFS spokesman said today (January 12).

PSP toxin is a natural toxin sometimes found in bi-valve shellfish. It is heat-stable and cannot be destroyed through cooking.

"Regarding the unsatisfactory sample, the CFS has taken follow-up actions, including alerting traders of the problem, tracing the source of the scallop, directing the concerned supermarket to stop selling the food in question and issuing a warning letter to the supermarket.
"If consumers have bought the concerned product, they should not consume it. We are monitoring the situation," a CFS spokesman said.

Some precautionary measures to avoid shellfish poisoning are as follows:

* Remove the viscera before cooking, avoid consuming the cooking sauce and eat a small amount of shellfish in one meal;
* Children, patients and the elderly may be susceptible to poisoning and should be cautious in consuming shellfish;
* When symptoms occur after consuming shellfish, seek medical advice immediately.

The prepackaged frozen half-shell scallop found to contain Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxin.

Ends/Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Issued at HKT 20:29