Calvados: Norman shellfish contaminated by hepatitis A, fishing prohibited

Calvados: Norman shellfish contaminated by hepatitis A, fishing prohibited
Calvados: Norman shellfish contaminated by hepatitis A, fishing prohibited

The hepatitis A virus was detected in shellfish collected from the production areas of Grandcamp-Maisy and Géfosse-Fontenay, in Calvados.

This Friday, the prefecture banned fishing and the marketing of shellfish from this sector.

A worrying discovery. The Calvados prefecture issued an order this Friday to prohibit fishing, collecting and marketing shellfish in the area of ​​Grandcamp-Maisy and Géfosse-Fontenay (Calvados) after the detection of the presence of the hepatitis virus on site. A, a viral infectious disease of the liver, report West France and France 3 Normandie.

As pointed out West France, sixteen cases of hepatitis A have been brought to the attention of health authorities in recent days. Among them, “six are linked to the consumption of shellfish from these areas”declared Sébastien Delescluse, deputy director general of the Normandy Regional Health Agency (ARS).

“An unprecedented phenomenon”

In his press release cited by West France, the prefecture announced the closure of the production areas concerned until June 8. The shellfish still present on the market will be removed. “We are witnessing an unprecedented phenomenon. The last episode dates back to 2007”said Thierry Chatelain, director of the departmental direction of territories and the sea (DDTM) at France 3.

The latter also clarified with West France that HAV, the virus that causes hepatitis A, had been “detected at entry and exit” of the Grandcamp wastewater treatment plant, after the implementation of wastewater monitoring in the Grandcamp, Isigny-sur-Mer (Calvados) and Carentan (Manche) wastewater treatment plants.

As France 3 points out, the prefectural authorities indicated that there was no “not a problem of oysters, but of contamination of the environment by hepatitis A, which again raises the question of the discharge of wastewater into the sea”.

A new blow for professionals

Hepatitis A is a liver infection causing inflammatory liver lesions, which disappear upon recovery, as well as changes to liver cells, recalls Health Insurance. It is transmitted between people or through contact with objects or food contaminated by the stool of a sick person, which contains HAV. Shellfish harvested from unsafe water can therefore be responsible for the contamination. The disease heals on its own and is immunizing: we therefore cannot contract it again.

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The appearance of this virus is a real blow for fishing professionals, who already had to face difficulties last winter. Indeed, a few days before the New Year, the prefectures of Calvados and Manche had banned “temporarily” the consumption and marketing of oysters produced in certain coastal sectors of these two departments “following reports of cases of collective food poisoning whose symptoms are those of acute gastroenteritis”. In Calvados, the production concerned was precisely that coming from the Grandcamp-Maisy Est and Géfosse-Fontenay sectors.


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