Beijing COVID-19 Outbreak Not Connected To Norwegian Salmon – Oslo

Two women wear protective suits as they walk on a street near the closed Xinfadi market in Beijing on June 13, 2020. GREG BAKER / AFP


Norway said Wednesday that salmon from the country was not the cause of the recently discovered outbreak of the new coronavirus in Beijing, after many Chinese restaurants and retailers stopped selling imported salmon.

Norwegian salmon came under scrutiny in China after a recently discovered cluster of new coronavirus cases was reportedly traced to the Xinfadi meat market in Beijing and a chopping board used for cutting up imported salmon.

“The issue is being resolved,” said fisheries minister Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen, quoted by TDN Finans.

“We’re working out the details today and I can confirm that the issue seems to be resolved,” Ingebrigtsen added.

Ingebrigtsen said Chinese and Norwegian officials had met on Tuesday and concluded that Norwegian salmon was unlikely to be the source of the virus detected last week at the Beijing market.

At least 137 people have been infected since last week in China’s capital, a resurgence of infections that has led to the lockdown of several neighbourhoods and the cancellation of more than a thousand flights.

Major supermarket chains including Wumart and Carrefour removed all stocks of salmon in the capital, but said supplies of other products would not be affected, Beijing Daily reported Saturday.

Some Beijing restaurants were not serving any salmon last weekend, according to AFP reporters.

Contacted by AFP, the Chinese embassy in Oslo did not provide any immediate comment.

China, considered a very promising market by the industry, last year imported around 23,500 tonnes of Norwegian salmon.


Anthonia Orji

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