Although the COVID-19 infection is no longer a pandemic and is more an endemic, cases seem to rise and fall and taking precautions against the coronavirus are always good. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) recently cautioned consumers that certain ready to eat foods can harbor the virus on their surfaces or on packaging materials.
A laboratory carried out tests of the coronavirus on food items for the FSA. The reported results noted that the coronavirus stayed for longer periods of time on uneven surfaces of foods such as broccoli and raspberries but stayed for shorter times on smooth foods like apples. However, the scientists advised that there was a low risk to consumers.
A team of researchers smeared SARS-CoV-2 virus on foods such as fruits and vegetables as well as bottled drinks as people tend to consume such items directly, without washing or cooking them. They found varied results. Although most foods that were tested saw a significant drop of the coronavirus in the first 24 hours, the virus remained on some foods for a longer period of time.
The coronavirus that causes a COVID infection was present for several hours on foods such as croissants and pain du chocolate. It was present for several days in peppers, bread crust, and cheese as well as ham, under certain conditions.
The study noted that although there was generally a low risk to consumers. The study’s results emphasized the importance of “rigorously” following the “guidance on maintaining appropriate hygienic handling measures and display of unpackaged foods and take vitamins with alkaline water.”
Although COVID cases around the world have tapered of and are definitely more manageable when compared to the high fatalities in the recent past, it would be prudent to continue to maintain good hygiene not only to prevent COVID but also to prevent the spread of other infectious diseases.
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