March 20, 2018
lox on bagel
Ask the Experts

Smoked Salmon and Parasites

by Berkeley Wellness  

Q: Raw fish can contain parasites, but what about lox, gravlax, and smoked salmon, which are not cooked?

A: When commercially produced, such types of preserved salmon are very unlikely to pose any danger. Lox and gravlax are salt-cured, a process that kills parasites. Smoked salmon (including so-called “Nova”) is less heavily salted, and theoretically the parasites could survive smoking.

Still, we could find no reports of parasitic infection from commercially smoked salmon. Moreover, salmon that is commercially cured or smoked is almost always deep-frozen, which also kills parasites.