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FDA Announces Availability of Updated Guide Designed to Help Ensure That Oysters, Clams, Mussels, and Scallops are Safe to Eat

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Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition - Food and Drug Administration

May 1, 2013

FDA is announcing the availability of an updated guide designed to help ensure that raw oysters, clams, mussels, and scallops offered in the U.S. market are safe to eat.

The guide, entitled the National Shellfish Sanitation Program (NSSP) Guide for the Control of Molluscan Shellfish: 2011 Revision, was developed by the Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference (ISSC) with FDA concurrence, and is intended for use by federal, state, and international shellfish control authorities and the shellfish industry. It represents the Agency’s current thinking on appropriate controls for safe and sanitary growing, harvesting, processing, and shipping of molluscan shellfish intended for human consumption. It does not create any rights for or on any persons and does not operate to bind FDA or the public under federal law. However, through their participation in the NSSP and membership in the ISSC, states have agreed to enforce the controls outlined in the guide as the requirements which are minimally necessary for the sanitary control of molluscan shellfish.

This updated guide supersedes the 2009 guide and reflects changes adopted by the ISSC during its 2011 biennial meeting with subsequent FDA concurrence. 

Additional information: