Fact check

Hoax message circulates online that coronavirus can be transmitted through the skin of fruits and vegetables.

Ayupp Fact Check image source social media

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Multiple Fake news claims: Hoax message circulates online that coronavirus can be transmitted through the skin of fruits and vegetables.

From Umhlanga Hospital to staff today:
“In our laboratory, we found a trace amount of the virus on the skin of fruits and vegetables after 12 hrs. of being touched by another customer who was infected.
We recommend our staff to avoid salads. Do not eat the fruits within 48 hrs..of purchase, or pour some boiling water over the fruit before cutting. 
Berries, apples, cucumbers, and tomatoes are the worst because some people eat the skin.
(This would explain why the virus is spreading faster in the West than Asia.) Most Asians do not eat salad, and very few eat the skin of any fruit. 
WE have to assume anything that comes from outside our home within 48 hrs. is infected. 
Shoes, clothes, our hair, all food.... ”from Dr Sanjay Nundlal Umhlanga hospital, Province of KwaZulu-Natal. South Africa"

From HK today:
“In our laboratory, we found a trace amount of the virus on the skin of fruits and vegetables after 12 hrs. of being touched by another customer who was infected.
We recommend our staff to avoid salads. Do not eat the fruits within 48 hrs..of purchase, or pour some boiling water over the fruit before cutting. 
Berries, apples, cucumbers, and tomatoes are the worst because some people eat the skin.
(This would explain why the virus is spreading faster in the West than Asia.) Most Asians do not eat salad, and very few eat the skin of any fruit. 
WE have to assume anything that comes from outside our home within 48 hrs. is infected. 
Shoes, clothes, our hair, all food....”

From a trusted source in Hong Kong today:
“In our laboratory, we found a trace amount of the virus on the skin of fruits and vegetables after 12 hours of being touched by another customer who was infected.

We recommend our staff to avoid salads. Do not eat the fruits within 48 hours

News Verification: Posts shared widely on Facebook, twitter and whatsapp claiming that Hong Kong medical lab, Umhlanga Hospital did some experiments and found out the COVID 19 virus is present in the fruits and vegetables even after 12 hours. People should avoid eating salads and fruits to avoid coronavirus.

Hongkong, 食物安全中心 Centre for Food Safety issued a clarification stating

[There is no evidence to show that humans are infected with 2019 coronavirus disease through food] Recently, rumors spread on social platforms that the 2019 coronavirus disease can be transmitted through food. Fact: There is currently no evidence that humans are infected with new coronaviruses through food. Food safety risk assessment agencies around the world including the European Union, Australia, and New Zealand also believe that humans are too likely to be infected with 2019 coronavirus disease through food. The Food Safety Center reminds the public to always keep their hands clean, especially before and after handling food, and before going to the toilet. In addition, remember that raw and cooked food should be handled separately, and cooked food should be eaten first!

Facts Check Verdict: False





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