This study compared species identity, microplastics, chemical and microbial contamination between consumption mussels and wild type mussels, collected at Belgian department stores and Belgian groynes and quaysides, respectively. Species identification based on genetic analysis showed a high number of Mytilus (M.) edulis compared to M. galloprovincialis and M. edulis/galloprovincialis hybrid mussels. The number of total microplastics varied from 2.6 to 5.1 fibres/10 g of mussel. A higher prevalence of orange fibres at quaysides is related to fisheries activities. Chemical contamination of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and polychlorobiphenyls could be related to industrial activities and water turbidity, with maximum concentrations at the quayside of port Zeebrugge. The inverse was noted for Escherichia coli contamination, which was relatively low at Zeebrugge quayside with a total count of 3.9 × 102 CFU/100 g tissue, due to limited agricultural effluents. Results of this complementary analysis stress the importance of integrated monitoring and quality assessment.
B. De Witte, L. Devriese, K. Bekaert and al., Marine Pollution Bulletin, Volume 85, Issue 1, Pages 146–155, August 2014