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NOAA Harmful Algae Research Featured at Interstate Seafood Seminar

NCCOS’s Dr. Quay Dortch was a featured speaker at the 66th Interstate Seafood Seminar conference during a session devoted to harmful algal blooms (HABs) and their impacts on shellfish safety and shellfish production.

A seafood delicacy made toxic by HABs: the hard clam/quahog (credit NOAA NMFS)

The hard clam, or quahog, is a seafood delicacy made toxic by harmful algal blooms. (Credit: NOAA NMFS)

Dortch discussed NOAA’s HAB programs and how they enhance state rapid response and build a national capacity to minimize HAB impacts. She also underscored how NOAA’s extramural and intramural HAB programs address end-user needs and provide research opportunities for stakeholders.

Shellfish growers, harvesters, processors, state public health and resource managers, and federal managers and regulators attended the seminar and discussed issues of interest to the shellfish industry in the mid-Atlantic states. HABs particularly threaten the rapidly expanding shellfish growing industry. There was great interest in understanding the HAB threat to public health and shellfish production—especially Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning—and developing better forecasting, monitoring, and mitigation.

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