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Goan Oysters safe. No more?

Alarming conclusion was derived from the recently conducted study by Goa based NIO (National Institute of Oceanography). High traces of cadmium (a chemical) usually found in rechargeable nickel–cadmium batteries (also known as NiCd battery or NiCad battery) was detected.

The samples were collected from the mouth of River Zuari, a popular harvest site. According to the US government regulations, 2 milligrams of Cadmium (Cd) per kilogram is acceptable. But, the local samples were found to contain 3.2 milligrams to 11.8 milligrams per kilogram. Much higher than the set acceptable level.

The chemical is toxic; it can affect the lungs and kidney of an individual, increase the potential of having cancer. It also has an impact on the development of embryos and fetuses. This does not paint a pretty picture for the people of Goa, as the seafood is considered a local delicacy.

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All hope is not lost. As NIO is trying to find out whether; there is a particular time of the year when Cadmium levels in oysters go up, making them safe for consumption at a later date when levels may be within the acceptable level. Results are currently awaited.

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