Hitherto, no stronger empirical evidence on transmission of COVID-19 via food packages came into the limelight. Though the deadly virus appears to survive on various surfaces, the transmission via food packaging surfaces seems unclear yet and needs further research. In addition to the World Health Organization (WHO), other international health and food safety authorities, including New Zealand and Australian Governments, have advised the public not to worry about the transmission of COVID-19 through food packaging surfaces.
Research studies have proved the viability of SARS virus akin to COVID-19 across plastic, wood, and metal surfaces. The viability depends on various factors viz. temperature, humidity, number of hours, and a lot more. However, when any surface gets properly sanitized and disinfected, the transmission of COVID-19 cannot happen. Experts also suggest that both the corporates (food service providers) and people follow food safety practices when handling food packages.
How China handles Food Surfaces during the COVID-19 Crisis?
This June 2020, in Beijing, after a few cases (persons involved in food delivery and courier services) tested positive, a mass nucleic acid test campaign was initiated to test if any other person carried the COVID-19. Immediately, to prevent viral transmission through food or food surfaces, the largest food markets in Beijing shunned its operations and services. The Chinese government has also requested the food exporters of China to declare that their products do not carry the novel coronavirus.
It’s important to note that China has already inculcated the practice of disinfecting the surface of buses, bank floors, and any public surfaces with UV light.
FDA Guidelines to Prevent the Transmission
The Food and Drug Administration of the United States has provided guidelines to the stakeholders, including retail food establishments and food service, food facilities, and farms. We know consumers are resources to industry members, and we should ensure our consumers’ and food safety during this Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19). It covers best practices that prevent food-borne illnesses caused by food and food packages.
The FDA’s primary best practice suggests frequent disinfection of food packaging surfaces in food stores, restaurants, retail units, and food pick-up and delivery services.
For years, many food manufacturing industries used UVC disinfection methods to disinfect their food kiosks, devices, and other manufacturing equipment surfaces. When these surfaces get UVC disinfection treatments, it’s apparent that food packaging surfaces can also be UVC treated with no side effects.
Today, amidst the pandemic situation across nations globally, it has become highly important for food and food-related businesses to focus on disinfection procedures. As UVC disinfection has proven its potentiality to contain the novel coronavirus, UVC disinfection chambers can be one of the best choices for their current needs.
UVC chambers from industry-leading manufacturers like iZak Scientific can help these businesses to disinfect multiple food packages at a time. The PXL UV chambers provide end-to-end microbial disinfection through its powerful pulsed xenon UVC light that has evidence of killing harmful bacteria, viruses, mildews, viruses like SARS, and COVID-19, and other microorganisms in no time.