China continues to find novel coronavirus on frozen beef, tripe from various countries

WION Web Team
Beijing, China Published: Nov 15, 2020, 01:43 PM(IST)

Food imports in China Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

China is the world's top beef buyer and Brazil and Argentina its largest suppliers. It ramped up testing of frozen foods this week as part of a nationwide campaign to curb the spread of the virus.

The eastern Chinese city of Jinan has found the novel coronavirus on beef and tripe, and on packaging for these products, from Brazil, New Zealand and Bolivia.

China is the world's top beef buyer and Brazil and Argentina its largest suppliers. It ramped up testing of frozen foods this week as part of a nationwide campaign to curb the spread of the virus.

The importers were a unit of Guotai International Group and Shanghai Zhongli Development Trade, the Jinan Municipal Health Commission said in a statement on its website late on Saturday.

The entry ports were Shanghai's Yangshan port customs and outer port customs, it said. The statement from the city in Shandong province did not name the companies that shipped the products.

More than 7,500 people who may have had contact with the contaminated products and other related personnel have, however, tested negative for the virus that causes COVID-19.

Chinese authorities last week found the coronavirus on the packaging of Saudi shrimp in Lanzhou city, Brazilian beef in Wuhan city and Argentinian beef in Shandong and Jiangsu provinces.

Also read | China finds novel coronavirus on packaging of Brazilian beef

The samples that tested positive came from a 24-tonne batch of frozen pork that was sent from a cold storage facility in Qingdao port to a warehouse for a market in Zhengzhou city.

The batch was found to be contaminated during a screening before the goods could enter the warehouse.

The World Health Organisation says the risk of catching COVID-19 from frozen food is low, but China has repeatedly sounded alarms after detecting the virus on imported food products, triggering disruptive import bans.

The novel coronavirus first emerged in the central Chinese city late last year, at a market, and has gone on to spread around the world.

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