A sample of frozen chicken wings imported from Brazil has tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen, authorities said Thursday, the latest in a series of reports of contaminated imported food products.
The coronavirus was detected Wednesday on a surface sample taken from a batch of chicken wings during screening of imported frozen food in Longgang district of Shenzhen, the municipal government said in a statement. Officials did not name the brand.
Health authorities, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), have said the possibility of catching the virus through food is low.
Shenzhen health authorities immediately traced and tested people who might have come into contact with the product, and all results came back negative; all related products in stock have been sealed off and tested negative, the statement said.
Authorities are now tracing related products from the same brand that have already been sold, and have disinfected the area where the contaminated chicken wings were stored.
The Brazilian Association of Animal Protein (ABPA) said in a statement that it is analyzing the incident and reiterated that “there is no scientific evidence that meat transmits the virus.”
“It is not yet clear when the packaging was contaminated, and whether it occurred during the export transportation process,” ABPA added.
The Brazilian agriculture ministry released a note stating that it has not been officially notified by Chinese authorities of the incident.
Brazil has so far reported more than 3.1 million coronavirus cases, the second highest in the world after the United States, according to Johns Hopkins University’s tally.
News of the contaminated chicken wings comes a day after coronavirus was found on the packaging of shrimps imported from Ecuador, another South American country, at a restaurant in eastern Anhui province during a routine inspection, China’s state broadcaster CCTV reported.
Culled from CNN