China bans shellfish imports from US West Coast
SEATTLE — China has suspended imports of shellfish from the U.S. West Coast, cutting off one of the biggest export markets for Northwest companies.
KUOW public radio reports (http://bit.ly/1fe35To) that the Chinese government imposed the ban after discovering that recent shipments of geoduck clams from Northwest waters had high levels of arsenic and a toxin that causes paralytic shellfish poisoning.
The Chinese government says the ban that started last week will continue indefinitely.
Clams, oysters and all other two-shelled bivalves harvested off Washington, Oregon, Alaska and Northern California are affected.
The U.S. exported $68 million worth of geoduck clams last year — most of which came from Puget Sound. Nearly 90 percent of those geoduck exports went to China.
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