- China, once the epicenter of the coronavirus, is now concerned that imports of frozen foods could spread the epidemic.
- Mass-testing campaigns have been rolled out in China after reports of coronavirus traces on imported food and packaging.
- In Wuhan, where Covid-19 first emerged late last year, authorities said Friday they had detected traces of the virus on frozen beef from Brazil.
Chinese health officials infected Covid-19 on Wednesday as two cold-chain storage workers in a port city in Tianjin shifted their focus to contaminated imports after numerous outbreaks related to frozen foods. Said.
Workers in hazmat suits have significantly controlled domestic infections, but are now carefully screening for food transport throughout the country, which is blaming the resurgence of local infections in imported goods. It was.
Massive test campaigns were launched following reports of traces of coronavirus on imported foods and packaging. On state television, workers use disinfectants to unload food trucks and inspect frozen salmon packages.
In Wuhan, where Covid-19 first appeared at the end of last year, officials said Friday that they had detected evidence of the virus in frozen Brazilian beef.
Four more cities reported last week that samples of imported foods, including frozen pork from Argentina and squid from India, were positive.
Customs official BiKexin said at a press conference last week that customs inspectors across the country had tested more than 800,000 samples from refrigerated imports and stopped shipping from 99 overseas suppliers.
After the June outbreak, authorities stepped up screening as traces of coronavirus were found on equipment used to process imported salmon.
In Tianjin, two infected workers “previously were both in contact with contaminated cold chain food,” officials said.
According to customs data in September, China’s meat imports increased by more than 70% this year as the country’s food supply was cut off by the flood that destroyed classical swine fever and farmland.
“Currently, there is no evidence that people can catch COVID-19 from food or food packaging,” the World Health Organization said.
Infection of Covid-19 with frozen foods in each country is “possible, but the extent of this spread is unknown because it has not been comprehensively studied,” said Paul Tambia, president of the Asia-Pacific Society for Clinical Microbial Infections. I told AFP.
Screening was stepped up after engaging with food transport workers as the recent outbreak in Tianjin (a little over 70 miles (112 kilometers) from the capital Beijing) threatened a second wave of winter.
Earlier this month, China banned visitors from countries such as the United Kingdom and India and raised inspection requirements for travelers from many other countries.
State media has also strengthened the claim that the virus may have been the cause of the first outbreak in Wuhan, which was originally associated with the seafood market, from imported foods.
Beijing argues that the cause of the first outbreak remains a mystery, which may not have occurred in China-this claim has been fiercely controversial by countries from the United States to Australia.
The Foreign Ministry also highlighted a conspiracy theory earlier this year that the US military may have brought the virus to Wuhan last year.
To catch up to WhatsApp, Signal adds custom wallpapers and animated stickers.
Signal enjoyed an unexpected uptick in users following WhatsApp’s recent privacy blunder. In an effort to capitalize on its rising popularity, Signal has started testing features that make the messaging platform feel a little friendlier.
Earlier this month, Signal announced a handful of new features that would be coming to the platform, including chat wallpapers and animated stickers. As promised, these two features are now available in the beta version of the app, making it feel more like WhatsApp than ever before.
Android Police got its hands on both new features, sharing screenshots of what chat wallpapers look like. You can change your chat wallpaper in Signal by going to Settings > Appearance > Chat wallpaper. You can also change the wallpaper of an individual chat by tapping the person’s name in the top bar and looking for the chat wallpaper option.
There are a total of 21 chat wallpapers to choose from, including 12 solid colors and 9 gradient colors. Android Police said you can also choose a photo from your phone’s camera roll for extra personalization. Before, Signal featured only white and black backgrounds depending on if dark mode was enabled on your device.
Android Police also provides a quick preview of Signal’s new animated stickers—something the platform has dabbled with in the past. There’s a new Day by Day sticker pack that contains 24 animated stickers to help liven up your conversation. The art is by Miguel Angel Camprubí.
Finally, Signal appears to be adding a simple About section for users’ profiles. Users will have the opportunity to choose an emoji and also add a short description of themselves. It’s a simple way to share some of your personality before even having a conversation. Apparently, Signal users can save several blurbs and switch between them on the fly, essentially making them status updates.
If you’re on iOS, Signal said it also plans to add media auto-download settings and full-screen profile photos, the latter of which is already available on Android.
These new additions to Signal appear to be in the beta version of the app for now. Hopefully, testing goes smoothly so they can be added to the stable build. Once that rolls out, we’ll be sure to let you know.