In mid-January, a report published a surprising result concerning an extraordinary contamination with Covid-19 in China: three samples of ice cream tested positive in the municipality of Tianjin, in the northeast of the country.
This report published in a local Chinese media indicates that traces of SARS-CoV-2 were found in three samples of ice cream with different flavors. One was chocolate, the other strawberry and the last taro, a food tuber from the tropics. These ice creams had been tested as part of a food control.
The contaminated ice cream was produced by the Tianjin Daqiaodao Food Company, which specializes in making cakes, ice cream and other frozen products. Once the infection was detected, the company had to shut down immediately and its 1,662 employees were quarantined. As of January 15, 700 of the people employed by the Tianjin Daqiaodao Food Company had tested negative for Covid-19.
In order to manufacture its ice cream, the company imports milk powder from New Zealand and whey powder from Ukraine. The ice samples tested positive for Covid-19 came from a lot consisting of 4,836 boxes. When the infection was discovered, more than 2,700 of these boxes had already entered the Chinese food market, while the rest of the ice cream was kept in a warehouse.
An investigation was opened in order to track all the merchandise that had already been distributed. The authorities also called on the locals not to continue to buy and consume these potentially contaminated products.
To date, the reason for the contamination of these ice creams with Covid-19 remains unclear. However, virologist Stephen Griffin of the University of Leeds assures us that this is probably a unique and exceptional event. According to him, the virus could have been preserved in the fat of ice cream, because of the very low temperatures necessary for the storage of this food product. Stephen Griffin is reassuring: this news item should not panic the population.
Source: Slate.fr by www.slate.fr.
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