China’s cold chain imports under scanner after fresh reports of COVID outbreak

December 2, 2020 Frozen

China, which earlier claimed to have a strategic win in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, is now reeling under fear as new cases linked to imported cold-chain foods and cargoes emerge from major hubs across the country.
Earlier in November, the country’s health minister informed that two confirmed cases were traced back to imported pig heads from North America. The two infected workers are both involved in the cold storehouse of Tianjin Hailian Frozen Food Co, located in the Binhai New Area.
With the emergence of the new cases, the country now seems to be concerned with preventing the new risk from cold-chain food imports and virus-carrying cargoes, particularly with cold winter temperatures, while ensuring the country’s massive trade is not disrupted.
In light of this, China’s Minister of Transport Sun Wenjian on Friday asked the logistics workers to take extra measures while handling cargo.
“When carrying and moving imported cold-chain food cargo, workers are asked to avoid putting goods close to their faces and not touching their mouths and noses. They are forbidden from opening food wrapping to prevent potential contact with the virus,” he said.

Furthermore, logistics companies in the country are now required to record and monitor the health status of front-line workers, providing them with protective equipment, conducting regular nucleic acid tests, and intensifying disinfection.
Keeping in line with the Chinese government’s call to contain another potential wave of the virus, many cargo operators in the country have suspended the operations of cargo trucks, reports suggest.
According to a report by Global Times, to send the frozen goods into the Chinese market, merchants are now required to get their certificates checked, which included a certificate of inspection and quarantine of imported goods, a certificate of nucleic acid testing of the goods, and the company’s business license.
It further informed that considering the likely spread of the virus from frozen goods, the seafood markets in the nation are also abiding by the epidemic prevention rules.
The nation has also re-evaluated its red-zones in a move to contain any further spread of the virus.
Moreover, the regulators for civil aviation, railway, and logistics are asked by the Chinese government to draw up regulations about imported cold-chain food transportation to prevent the spread of the virus.

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