The Shellfish Partnership
The Shellfish Partnership was formed in 2012 to help the Food Standards Agency (FSA) deliver integrated and cost-effective official food safety controls for molluscan shellfish in the UK. This is required for shellfish-harvesting areas, as described in EC Regulations.
Co-ordinated by Cefas, the Shellfish Partnership laboratories (listed below) have an excellent track record for official control programmes delivery and specific expertise in shellfish safety.
On a day-to-day basis the Partnership laboratories work to common standards under a contract agreed with the FSA. In addition to the specific services detailed below, they provide technical advice, incident response and contingency support for one another during emergencies.
The individual laboratories deliver the following services for the specified locations.
- UK-wide: FSA liaison; Partnership co-ordination; sanitary surveys programme and reports
- England, Wales and Scotland: biotoxins monitoring
- England and Wales only: phytoplankton monitoring; classification
- Scotland: E.coli monitoring (not for Shetland and Orkney)
- Northern Ireland: biotoxins, phytoplankton and chemical contaminants (heavy metals and PAHs only) monitoring
- England, Wales and Scotland: chemical contaminants monitoring
- Northern Ireland: PCBs and dioxin monitoring
- Scotland: sanitary surveys (bacteriology)
- Shetland and Orkney: sanitary surveys (shoreline)
- Scotland: phytoplankton monitoring; sanitary surveys (shoreline and hydrography) (not for Shetland or Orkney)
- Shetland and Orkney: E.coli monitoring; sanitary surveys (shoreline and hydrography)
The Shellfish Partnership works closely with the FSA (the Competent Authority) and local authorities and other contractors, who are responsible for sampling and other local activities.
To view the latest results from the shellfish monitoring programmes, and for further information, please consult the FSA's website. ailable on the FSANI website.
The following list of protocols and forms are used across the Shellfish Partnership, under the official control monitoring programmes.
Sample submission forms2
Sample submission forms for shellfish collected in England and Wales for classification purposes are available from the official control laboratories undertaking E.coli analysis in England and Wales.
2 Collection protocols for shellfish and water for Northern Ireland, plus the relevant sample submission forms for the same country, are available on the FSANI website.