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Beijing asks frozen food importers to shun countries with severe COVID-19 outbreaks

Beijing asks frozen food importers to shun countries with severe COVID-19 outbreaks

Vendors wait for customers at their stall selling frozen meat and seafood balls at a market in Beijing on June 20, 2020. (File photo: AFP/NICOLAS ASFOURI)

BEIJING: China's capital called on importers on Monday (Sep 28) to shun frozen food from countries suffering from severe novel coronavirus outbreaks after several cases of imported seafood products testing positive for the virus.

"Customs and local governments have repeatedly detected the coronavirus in imported cold chain food, proving it risks contamination," the Beijing Municipal Commerce Bureau said in a statement issued to import companies.

READ: Chinese shoppers wary of frozen food imports after coronavirus found

The bureau urged them to closely monitor the overseas pandemic situation and "proactively avoid importing cold chain food from areas heavily hit by the coronavirus" and make alternative plans for imports.

It had also asked companies to improve their warning and reporting mechanisms and tell authorities quickly if products tested positive.

READ: WHO downplays danger of coronavirus latching on to food packaging

READ: COVID-19 found on imported squid packaging in China

China had reported no local infections of the coronavirus for more than a month but recently detected it on the packaging of imported aquatic products in Jilin province and Qingdao city.

China this month suspended imports from seafood producers in Brazil, Indonesia and Russia for a week or more.

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Source: Reuters/aa
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