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Harvesting of shellfish

Some species of shellfish (live bivalve molluscs), such as oysters, mussels, cockles etc., are filter feeders and accumulate sewage contamination and toxins from the water around them therefore their consumption may cause illness.

To control the risk of illness, live bivalve molluscs being placed on the market for human consumption must originate from a classified production area.

Areas are classified per species according to the degree of contamination, based on monitoring of faecal contamination in the shellfish. Only shellfish from Class A waters can be placed on the market directly.

An annual list of classified areas is published by Food Standards Scotland covering the period 1st April to 31st March the following year and is divided by local authority area and provides all the current shellfish harvesting production area details.

South Ayrshire Council regularly sample our classified production area, to ensure levels of bacteria and algal toxins are safe. View a table of the latest algal toxins results. Temporary closure notices, prohibiting the harvesting of shellfish, are served where results reveal a risk to public health.

Areas currently classified within South Ayrshire are:

Production Area Species Site Name Boundaries Status
North Bay Razors Barassie (SA-337-719-16) Area bounded by lines drawn between NS 3130 3136 and NS 3130 3450 and between NS 3130 3450 and NS 3236 3450 extending to MHWS Closed
2017
No classification January to March 31st
Meikle Craigs Annual Razors Meikle Craigs (SA-643-1316-16) Area Bounded by lines drawn between NS 3292 2883, NS 3401 2737, NS 3428 2631, NS 3421 2499, NS 3299 2500, NS 3224 2828 Open
2016
B- April to December
2017
B- January to March
Croy Bay Razors Culzean Bay (SA-681-1482-16) Area bounded by lines drawn between NS24471386, NS23591410, NS18630707, NS19160454, NS18700149, NX17649880, NX18329880, extending to MHWS Open (30-06-2015)
2016
A- April to December
2017
A- January to March
Gapers SA-775-1994-18 Area bounded by lines drawn between NS24471386, NS23591410, NS18630707, NS19160454, NS18700149, NX17649880, NX18329880, extending to MHWS Open
2016
B November and December
2017
B January to March
Girvan South Razors Razors Girvan South Razors Area bounded by lines drawn between points NX18009830, NX17009528, NX14209570, NX14539961 extending to MHWS. Open
PROVISIONAL CLASSIFICATION
2016
B September - December
2017
B January - March
Lendalfoot Razors Razors Lendalfoot Razors Area bounded by lines drawn between points NX13469070, NX12288944, NX11238990, NX12189125 extending to MHWS. Open
PROVISIONAL CLASSIFICATION
2016
B October - December
2017
B January - March
Ballantrae Razors Razors Ballantrae Razors Area bounded by lines drawn between points NX07728112, NX06358148, NX09138610, NX06968689 extending to MHWS. Open
PROVISIONAL CLASSIFICATION
2016
A October - December
2017
A January - March

Shellfish Traceability

To ensure traceability of the product, a registration document requires to accompany each batch of live shellfish during transportation from the production area to the dispatch or purification centre.

Please contact us for registration documents if you wish to gather shellfish from a classified production area within South Ayrshire.

All shellfish leaving an approved dispatch or purification centre must be labelled with an identification mark, which includes their unique approval number, before being placed on the market for human consumption.

Draft classification of shellfish harvesting areas document 2017/18

The interim Classification of Shellfish Harvesting Areas Document 2017/18 Scotland covering the period from April 2017 to March 2018 has now been published.

You are invited to consider the classification awards and where you disagree with any classification may appeal against that decision using the application form for Appeal of Shellfish Harvesting Area Classification.

The deadline for making an appeal against any classification decision is 10th March 2017.

Appeals should be sent to Amy Mills at Food Standards Scotland by email or to the postal address below. Appeals may be submitted between now and no later than close of play Friday 10th March 2017, no appeals will be accepted after this date. Please include full details of the grounds of appeal with any supporting evidence.

An appeal can be lodged by completing and submitting an appeal application form form to FSS, with supporting information and/or data that may be relevant to the area. This can be in the form of harvesters own results (only results from UKAS accredited laboratories can be considered for the basis of appeal), any relevant environmental details relating to the area and/or details on any improvements to the area infrastructure that may affect classification results.

The Appeals Panel will meet shortly after the deadline in March to consider the appeals that have been submitted. Following this, the document will be amended to take into account the Panel’s decisions and published prior to the start of the new classification year in April.

Amy Mills
Food Standards Scotland
Pilgrim House, Old Ford Road, Aberdeen, AB11 5RL
01224 285191
Amy.Mills@fss.scot

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