September 12, 2020

China researchers find chilled salmon to be potential carrier of coronavirus


Researchers in China have found that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, can survive for as long as eight days in chilled salmon at 4 degrees Celsius (39 degrees Fahrenheit), or near-freezing temperature, which is the same temperature at which the fish are transported, Bloomberg reported. 

"SARS-CoV-2-contaminated fish from one country can be easily transported to another country within one week, thus serving as one of the sources for international transmission", said the researchers from the South China Agricultural University and Guangdong Academy of Agricultural Sciences.

Along with research on imported fish as a potential source of infections, China has also been investigating imported meat, packaging and containers as a potential source of COVID-19, as per report. China's customs agency reported on Tuesday, Sept. 8, that six of more than 500,000 samples tested were positive for the coronavirus.

The first COVID-19 outbreak was initially associated with the Huanan Seafood Market in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019. An outbreak in June was also associated with the Xinfadi Seafood Market in Beijing, the researchers said.

Three months ago, as reported by China Daily, Wu Zunyou, the chief epidemiologist at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said that fish in their natural habitat cannot catch coronavirus; however, they can be contaminated by workers during capture or transportation.

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