Indians Demand Retest Of COVID Buffalo Meat Before Burning

Phnom Penh: A buffalo meat importer and the Indian Embassy in Cambodia are still not satisfied with the detection of COVID-19 found on buffalo imported from India, claiming that the buffalo was inspected by Indian laboratories in accordance with ISO Before importing to Cambodia, Escari Investment & Construction Co., Ltd. Imported 3 containers from the same factory with the same packaging, with one negative and the other two positive for the virus, according to two different letters.

The request from the Indian Embassy as well as the company came after Cambodian authorities planned to burn the buffalo meat found with in Kampong Speu province’s Oral district on July 27.

A letter from the embassy, written in English, states that the meat had been properly inspected by Indian laboratories in accordance with ISO standards. The Indian Embassy in Cambodia and the importer have requested the Ministry of Health and the Disease Control Commission retest to confirm the results. The embassy said the buffalo had been exported from India since April and arrived in Cambodia in July, so there was no scientific evidence that the virus could survive on food and food packaging for nearly three months.

The Indian embassy also tried to explain that COVID-19 is a respiratory disease that is transmitted through person-to-person contact and there is no evidence that it can be transmitted through food packaging or food. To date, no country has reported cases from frozen or packaged foods, or the surface of packaging.

Separately, the letter that Escari Investment & Construction Co., Ltd. At the request of Dr. Kun Nhim, Minister Delegate to the Prime Minister and Director General of the General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia, also requested to test the buffalo meat again, stating that the company has no objections and is happy to participate and is always cooperating in the campaign against COVID, but the company recommends consideration and favor the idea to take a sample and test one last time.

According to Escari, the company imported three shipments from HMA AGRO Industries LTD, all from the same factory and all had the same packaging, with one negative and two positive containers.

The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia has announced the discovery of 5 containers of frozen buffalo meat imported from India, of which 3 containers were found to contain the virus. According to the Ministry of Health’s analysis of the five containers of frozen buffalo meat, the first container belonging to Bovinifood Co., Ltd. and the second and third containers belonging to Escari Investment & Construction Co., Ltd.

After this discovery, the General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia, together with the relevant authorities, planned to burn the buffalo meat in Oral district, Kampong Speu province on July 27, 2021, but it was stopped due to this request. KPT

UPDATE: Later reports suggest the meat was burned anyway.

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