So we have all been hearing about coronavirus and COVID-19 for over six months now, what do these terms mean.
OK, so Coronavirus is a group of viruses with similar characteristics, the common cold and the annual flu are members of this group
COVID-19 is a disease which is caused by one of the Coronaviruses.
So all of these COVID Safety Plans and requirements we now have to have to be able run our food businesses, are all about stopping a specific virus from spreading.
So what is this virus – it is called SARS-COv-2. It is related to the previously well known SARS virus because it also causes sudden acute respiratory symptoms, amongst others issues.
So one of the major controls for stopping the cross infection of this virus is cleaning. So a question that obviously needs to be asked when thinking about what cleaning is required, is how long can this virus survive on surfaces in food businesses?
A recent study published in the Virology Journal gives us some clear ideas on the answers to this important question.
In summary the survival time on a surface is directly connected to, as would be expected, the temperature of the surface.
The higher the temperature the lower the survival. It is good to know that this basic food safety principle also applies to this virus.
Interestingly, this study has shown that in the reverse of what would be expected, it is porous surfaces like cotton, which have the lowest survival rates of this virus, whereas the key food business surface materials of stainless steel and glass have high survival rates.
The study shows that on stainless steel and glass surfaces at 20 degrees Celsius SARS-COv-2 can survive for up to 28 days.
This means that as food businesses we have to ensure that cleaning and sanitising is thorough and especially the multitude of touch points in our business, particularly if we have public access into any part of our business.
For more information, here is the link to the article