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Most polar bears carry trichinella

27 February 2018 

Public Health Advisory

Most polar bears carry trichinella

The Department of Health is reminding Nunavummiut that many polar bears carry a tiny round worm called trichinella, which can make humans sick. Freezing or fermenting meat will not kill trichinella, it can only be killed by cooking.

Polar bear meat is a nutritious food! Before eating polar bear, it should be cooked until there is no pink or red in the meat.

A factsheet on trichinosis can be found on the Department of Health’s website at:


Media Contact:

Ron Wassink
Communications Specialist
Department of Health