COVID-19 transmission: Is food packaging spreading Coronavirus infection? Here’s what WHO said

By: |
August 31, 2020 12:01 PM

In two Chinese cities, some traces of COVID-19 were found in food packaging of imported frozen food. This alarmed people into believing that shipments of contaminated food may cause some additional transmission and lead to new cases of viral infection.

WHO stepped in and made a statement to ease the fear in the minds of people.

Coronavirus transmission: Among rising concerns of Coronavirus transmission via food packaging, the danger has been downplayed by the World Health Organization and people are urged to not be afraid of the virus entering the food chain. It is to note that in two Chinese cities, some traces of COVID-19 were found in food packaging of imported frozen food. This alarmed people into believing that shipments of contaminated food may cause some additional transmission and lead to new cases of viral infection. WHO stepped in and made a statement to ease the fear in the minds of people.

Citing Mike Ryan, a report by The Indian Express said the people should not be afraid of food, or food packaging along with processing and delivery of food. Ryan who is heading the emergencies programme at WHO during a briefing in Geneva highlighted that no evidence of Coronavirus transmission has been found through the food chain and people should have the fear of getting infected rather they should feel comfortable. According to Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO epidemiologist, China tested hundreds of thousands of packages for COVID-19 traces and less than 10 packages showed some traces of Coronavirus, making it a very small percentage.

Meanwhile, globally 24,854,140 cases have been reported for Coronavirus where the death toll is recorded at 838,924. With the increase in the number of cases, countries are now betting on bringing vaccines as soon as possible with the arrangement of bilaterals deals. However, WHO emphasised that countries should also not abandon multilateral efforts in order to help countries for whom vaccination procurement is not easy.

Among many vaccine candidates, Russia has announced that it became the first country that has granted regulatory approval to a COVID-19 vaccine after human clinical trials started not two month ago. But since only 10 per cent of clinical trials are successful for the vaccine, there is fear among scientists that the vaccine may not be as safe as expected and the country has put national prestige on priority. In fact, WHO does not have enough information in order for the organization to make a judgement call.

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