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Lake Geneva trout back on the menu

Local News // Aug. 9, 2016
Lake Geneva trout back on the menu

There's good news for fishermen as large trout from Lake Geneva will soon be back on supermarket shelves.

Ten months ago the Haute-Savoie prefecture banned fish over 54cm because of an excessive concentration of PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyl) and micropollutants.

That ban will be lifted in September.

In Geneva, Vaud and Valais, large salmon were also found to be unfit for consumption and anything over 39cm was banned.

It's looking like that measure could be repealed too.

The ban however does not mean that there are fewer PCBs since last November in the lake and in the flesh of fish.

The French authorities say these substances are not harmful in small doses, and on balance, it's better to keep selling them, and just recommended not to eat too much of the fish.

Local fishermen had protested against the ban, based on a study from the International Commission for the Protection of the waters of Lake Geneva.

They said there was a lack of scientific evidence in the study which only analysed 22 specimens from two places in the lake.

A new study is now underway on a wider scale.

Experts also say the French and Swiss authorities exercised too much caution with a threshold of 54 cm, as smaller fish also contain PCBs.

They say what is bad for health is the long-term accumulation of PCBs in the body.

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