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U.S. Plans Raw Warm-Water Oyster Ban
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U.S. Plans Raw Warm-Water Oyster Ban

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The federal government is looking to ban warm-water oysters in warm months along the Gulf Coast due to deaths from people eating contaminated oysters.

A federal effort to ban the sale of raw oysters harvested during the warm months along the Gulf Coast has kicked up a hurricane of opposition from oystermen and members of Congress and threatened to derail a signature food-safety initiative by the Obama administration. At issue is how far the federal government should go to save the lives of 15 people each year who die from eating contaminated raw oysters. A top official at the Food and Drug Administration announced last month that the agency would ban as of 2011 the sale of raw oysters harvested from the Gulf Coast during the warm water months because they are the source for nearly all the deaths associated with raw oysters each year. The agency said processes like freezing and pasteurization that make the oysters safer are available and do little to alter the taste of oysters. – From NY Times



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