Summer Algae Bloom
June 2018 has witnessed an intense bloom of summertime algae. Whilst algae naturally contains important food for the marine eco-systems (and largely welcomed by mussel farmers) this particular algae, Dinophysis, is not welcomed.
As mussles and other bivalve shellfish ffed, their stomach sacks become full of this rich plankton, and when thse levels reach a certain limit, it can when consumed, result in sickness and diarrhoea.
As the Shetlands provide the largest rope-grown mussel farms in the UK, it goes without saying that they want to ensure that their consumers are continuing to enjoy eating shellfish without being subjected to any health risks. the Food Standards Agency Scotland, have a special sampling procedures (one of the best in the world) to make sure that these areas are sampled frequently, and if any risks are detected these areas are closed down until the mussels naturally purge themselves. You can keep track of what is happening throughout Scotland by clicking here
With plankton levels rising, and several sites being closed down, it was decided as a precaution that mussel harvests will be drastically reduced, until they have naturally recovered.
This therefore means that until further notice we have limited supplies of mussels, and ask that if you are able, to temporarily move to frozen, until this issue has been resolved.