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As foodborne viruses have only recently been identified as a potential issue in food safety, our knowledge of viruses on food contact surfaces and their associated removal via cleaning programmes is poor and COVID-19 has only now brought this into focus.
Viruses embedded in the food soil will be removed from surfaces via the rinsing and detergent steps. How strongly viruses attach to food processing surfaces and how well they are removed from them via detergency, is however, not well known; as are the potential effects of detergents on the virus structure or its infectivity (technically the virus is not ‘alive’ so it cannot be ‘killed’).
This paper looks at the efficacy against viruses of some of the common routine hygiene programmes employed, including the effect of detergents on virus inactivation and the performance of fogging as a method for removal/inactivation of viruses in the air.
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