Understanding what toxins might play a role in the future is important in ensuring seafood is safe to eat Photo: The Marine InstituteUnderstanding what toxins might play a role in the future is important in ensuring seafood is safe to eat Photo: The Marine Institute

The Marine Institute has collaborated with ten partners on a research project into developing a marine toxin warning network in European waters.

Atlantic Area Network for Innovative Toxicity Alert Systems for Safer Seafood Products, known as Alertox-Net, is funded by the Interreg Atlantic Area European Regional Development Fund and is looking at new toxins to provide a better prediction system of potential seafood toxicity risk.

“Alertox-Net is providing technical solutions for faster and easier detection methods for emerging toxins to the European shellfish industry, and these resources are currently being collated into one integrated expertise network,” explained Joe Silke, director of marine environment and food safety services at the Marine Institute.

Alertox-Net has helped to deliver scientific, technical services and provide advice to regulatory authorities, helping to underpin future development in Europe’s aquaculture sector.

Aquaculture plays an important role in rural development, directly employing around 75,300 people and producing an estimated €4.9 billion in sales value, according to the Economic Report of the EU Aquaculture Sector, 2018.

A recent project meeting included talks on the validation completed on methods for regulating emerging toxins and the creation of an open access database. The meeting also acknowledged the 20 papers which have been published as part of the Alertox-Net project.

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