Food safety authorities follow the evolution of the situation
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is closely monitoring the situation in relation to the outbreak of the COVID-19 disease, better known as Coronavirus or Wuhan pneumonia, which is affecting many countries around the world and it is considered a global pandemic.
There is currently no clear scientific evidence that food itself may be a likely source or route of transmission of Coronavirus, yet the authorities are closely following the information available to take necessary food safety measures if necessary.
The food sector is following the Coronavirus crisis with great attention
Marga Hugas, Chief Scientist at EFSA, states that «experiences from previous outbreaks of related coronaviruses, such as the coronavirus causing severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV) or the coronavirus causing respiratory syndrome in the Middle East (MERS-CoV) , indicate that there was no transmission through food consumption and that, therefore, there is no evidence to suggest that this coronavirus is different in this regard».
The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has stated that the source of the initial infection was most likely some exotic animal in China’s Hubei province. But that the virus is spreading among people, mainly by inhaling the small drops in the air when a person coughs, sneezes, or exhales with their breath.
Scientists and authorities around the world are monitoring the spread of the virus, and no cases of foodborne transmission have been reported. For this reason, the EFSA or other food agencies are not currently involved in the response to outbreaks of the COVID-19 virus.
Despite this, the national and international health and food authorities are constantly monitoring scientific information and publications that address this situation.
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