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I have heard that bivalve shellfish need to be purified before they are sold. What does purification do?

Bivalve shellfish harvested from a Class B shellfish bed require purification (also known as depuration) before being sold. Purification is a controlled aquatic process carried out in an Approved Premises whereby low level microbial contamination is removed from shellfish leaving them safe for consumers. It is a natural biological process using clean seawater that allows the shellfish to purge pollutants.

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