Frozen shrimp

On Friday, China's customs authority stated that after the recent shipments of shrimps were detected with the presence of coronavirus, the imports from three shrimp producers in Ecuador were suspended.

Six positive results were produced from samples that were taken from shipments from Industrial Pesquera Santa Priscila SA, Empacreci SA and Empacadora Del Pacifico Sociedad Anonima Edpacif. It should however be noted that tests on the shrimp and inner packaging were negative.

Company officials were not available for comment on this, reports stated.

General Administration of Customs said in a statement on its website, that, the chances of contamination were there following the nucleic acid sequence analysis and expert judgment. The test results suggested that the container environment and the outer packaging of the goods of the three companies were at the risk of getting affected by the new coronavirus. It was further added that the companies' food safety management system was not in order.

Checking presence of coronavirus in frozen foods

Since China started testing imported frozen foods to check the presence of coronavirus, this is the first time that positive results have been announced by Beijing.

Before this incident, a chopping board to cut salmon at a large food market in Beijing was found with coronavirus in June when workers from the market were tested positive for the virus and since then the testing campaign was started.

Beijing had shut down its largest wholesale market for vegetables and meat when this had happened fearing that there can be a resurgence of coronavirus cases in the Chinese capital city. About 11 residential communities in the vicinity were also locked down as at least 45 of the 517 samples so far collected from traders and employees at the Xinfadi market tested positive.

It should be noted that according to experts, there is no evidence, which can prove that the virus can be spread through food but after the virus was found on the chopping board, China has halted imports of salmon from major European suppliers.

According to the customs authority, this step has been taken to protect health of the consumer and do away with possible dangers and this is why China was suspending imports from the three shrimp producers.

The authority has ordered that shrimps produced by the three firms after March 12 and already imported into China should be either recalled or destroyed.