Jul 15, 2020 02:49 PM

Chinese Customs on Alert for Virus-Contaminated Seafood Imports

What’s new: A city in East China has implemented disease-control measures after authorities found a shipment of imported shrimp was contaminated with the coronavirus.

The move comes as Chinese customs authorities block food imports from at least 23 food producers due to the risk of virus transmission.

Officials in Pingxiang, a city of 1.9 million people in Jiangxi province, said in a statement (link in Chinese) Tuesday that the pathogen was found on exterior packaging and the inside of a container transporting Ecuadorian shrimp.

Expressing concern for the health of consumers, the statement added that the product has been withdrawn from stores and any consumers believed to have come in contact with the contaminated batch are being traced and tested.

The background: Multiple Chinese cities, including Dalian and Xiamen, have detected (link in Chinese) the coronavirus on Ecuadorian shrimp products in recent days.

Last week, the country’s General Administration of Customs suspended imports from three seafood processors in the South American nation following positive tests.

The discoveries have ignited discussion of whether the virus can transmit via food or frozen products. A recent Covid-19 flare-up in the Chinese capital, Beijing, was linked to salmon imported from Europe.

Contact reporter Matthew Walsh ( and editor Joshua Dummer (

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