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Inspectors give oysters clean bill of health

BILOXI — The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) and the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), in coordination with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), announce that Mississippi oysters are safe for human consumption.

Mississippi oyster season is closed during the summer months and typically opens in September or October.

“We are pleased with the results that have come back from FDA and NOAA, which show that our Mississippi oysters are safe to eat,” said MDMR Fisheries director Dale Diaz. “Like all the seafood samples collected and tested from Mississippi territorial waters since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, our Mississippi oyster tissue samples have undergone rigorous testing and have been proven to be well below levels of concern for hydrocarbons.”

“In the testing for the reopening of federal waters, we are finding similar results to what has been found in Mississippi state waters. Of the more than 1,700 federal samples tested, the levels of contaminants detected are 100 to 1,000 times lower than the threshold for what the FDA has identified as potentially harmful to humans,” said Dr. John Stein of NOAA’s Seafood Safety Program responding to the Gulf oil spill.

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