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Chinese Authorities Find Coronavirus on Frozen Squid From Russia

China has carried out widespread routine screenings on imported seafood and meat products. Ivan Kargapoltsev / TASS

Authorities in China’s eastern Jilin province have discovered traces of coronavirus on packages of frozen squid imported from Russia, China’s state-run Xinhua news agency reported Sunday. 

The regional capital Changchun’s Covid-19 prevention office detected the virus particles during a routine screening, Xinhua reported. 

All individuals who came into contact with the packages in Changchun were identified and tested negative for Covid-19, Xinhua reported.

At least 10 kilograms of squid from the same batch were imported to the nearby city of Fuyu before the virus was detected. All Fuyu residents who have purchased and eaten squid from this batch between Aug. 24 and 31 have been urged to report to the authorities and take Covid-19 tests. 

The squid manufacturer has not been identified and it is unclear whether disciplinary action will be taken against the company. Russian authorities have not yet commented on the incident. 

China has carried out widespread routine screenings on imported seafood and meat products since June, when an outbreak in Beijing was linked to a wholesale food market. Earlier this month, Chinese authorities found Covid-19 particles on frozen seafood packages imported from Indonesia. 

The World Health Organization has said that Covid-19 cannot multiply on the surface of food packaging and does not encourage disinfecting this packaging. 

Russia has confirmed over 1.1 million Covid-19 infections and over 19,400 deaths overall, with new daily cases rising above 6,000 in recent days after hitting a low of 4,600 last month.

China, the country where the pandemic originated, tightened security along its border with Russia this spring in an effort to prevent a second wave of the virus entering the country from its northern neighbor.

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