NEW DELHI: Food safety regulator FSSAI on Thursday said imported food items, including those from coronavirus-affected nations, are "safe" for human consumption but cautioned people against eating raw or undercooked meat and unprocessed food products.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) said a committee constituted to examine this issue has not found any "conclusive evidence" of the food-borne transmission of the deadly virus.
Coronavirus predominately affects the respiratory system and spread from human to human via droplets while sneezing, coughing, contaminated hands and surfaces.
The committee said meat from cooked livestock including poultry is safe to eat, it said in a statement. As a precautionary measure, the committee advised to avoid consumption of raw or undercooked meat as well as unprocessed food products. Frozen food items must be consumed only after cooking them properly.
Good hygienic practices must be followed before consuming raw fruits and vegetables, the FSSAI added.
The committee agreed with the advisories of global organizations that the predominant routes of transmission of coronavirus appear to be human to human.
"FSSAI is keeping a close watch on the situation," the regulator said and added that it will continue to gather and monitor evidences from international agencies and scientific communities of any such transmission leading to coronavirus disease and will take appropriate steps to ensure the safety of food products. There are 30 confirmed cases of coronavirus in India.