Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) has updated advice to recreational fishers regarding the consumption of barramundi from the Hazelwood Pondage.
Following the release of revised standards by Food Standards Australia New Zealand relating to PFAS, EPA recommends recreational fishers restrict the consumption of barramundi caught at the Hazelwood Pondage to one serve per week for adults* and one serve per fortnight for children**.
People who have eaten barramundi over the short five-month-period since the fishery opened in December 2016 are not considered to be at risk of any adverse health effects.
* One serve for adults is 150 grams.
** One serve for children is 75 grams (about three fish fingers).
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of chemicals that include perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS).
As they have heat, water and stain repelling properties, PFAS have been widely used in a range of industrial and consumer products both in Australia and internationally, including in fire retardants, water proofing, food preparation, food packaging, furnishings, clothing and recreational equipment.
Information regarding the health effects of PFAS can be found at: https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/about/publications/factsheets/per-and-poly-fluoroalkyl-substances-factsheet
Information on the FSANZ review of the health-based guidelines for PFAS can be found at: www.foodstandards.gov.au
Information regarding fishing at Hazelwood Pondage is available from Fisheries Victoria at: http://agriculture.vic.gov.au/fisheries