Dr Sarah Jarvis issued a COVID-19 warning on Good Morning Britain today (August 14).
The GP spoke out after nearly 300 staff tested positive for coronavirus at a sandwich factory that supplies M&S.
Dr Sarah Jarvis issues COVID warning on GMB
During a chat with hosts Charlotte Hawkins and Sean Fletcher, Dr Sarah stressed that Brits need to be careful when it comes to food packaging.
She said: “We know that for instance that in New Zealand, they think that the latest outbreak they’ve had may have come in through packaging rather than through people.
“Theoretically, even if something is cooked, yes, there is a risk.
“It does remind us that the virus can survive for 24 hours on hard wood and for up to three days on hard metal and plastic
“So we do know there are risks.”
COVID-19 outbreak in Northampton
Food plant Grencore, which is based in Northampton, has confirmed that 292 members of staff have tested positive for COVID-19.
Testing was carried out by the NHS and privately through Greencore.
Dr Sarah went on to explain why there have been outbreaks at food processing factories.
She said: “Interestingly, it’s not always due to food.
“We think that there is a link in the way in which people travel to work and the way they live.
“A lot of people who work together in these processing factories and plants will travel to work together, they’ll work together, they’ll come home together, they’ll socialise together and often, they’ll live together.
“It may be more to do with that.”
Containing the outbreak
Greencore carried out testing on staff following a spike of COVID cases in Northampton.
Diagnosed cases shot up from 66 to 85 in the week ending August.
Public Health Northampton is working with the factory to help contain the outbreak.
All staff that were diagnosed with COVID are now self-isolating.
Good Morning Britain is on ITV, weekdays at 6am.
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