Food Safety Concerns: Are dairy products in Bahrain safe to consume?

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“Do I need to worry about food safety?”

“Can food become contaminated with coronavirus and infect people?”

“Are dairy products safe to consume?”

The pandemic has brought upon a number of questions – all stemming from the suspicion over possible links between animals, their byproducts and the new coronavirus (COVID-19). It is evident how this virus has changed how we live and think around the world.

Gulf Insider has delved into finding more information that will help address your worries in light of the COVID-19 outbreak. Despite the large scale of the pandemic, there has been no report of transmission of COVID-19 via consumption of food to date. Moreover, there has been no evidence of the virus being transmitted through livestock, other animals and dairy products in Bahrain. Therefore, dairy products are safe to consume.

In contrast to the above misconception, studies actually show that a balanced diet can help improve nutritional health, enhance immune resistance and provide nutritional support to combat diseases. Having a healthy diet is important in supporting your immune function and consuming nutrients influence the body’s ability to fight infection. Milk and other dairy products are an excellent source of protein, calcium, and vitamins essential for the human body.

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Dairy foods produced and processed in Bahrain are safe. The food industry has implemented social distancing practices consistent with public health recommendations. In the region, dairy producers follow a set of practices and procedures set by the ISO to ensure the safety of product supply.

Bahraini company, Awal Dairy, said that they have stepped up the safety procedures: “We have limited human interaction to a minimum. Only essential staff attends the workplace and no one from outside is allowed to enter the factories, and it will remain this way until the pandemic ends”.

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“Most of our production process is entirely automatic, and we have employees operating the machines. Nobody handles the products by hand, except where absolutely necessary. 90% of production is automatic, across all divisions”, Awal Dairy added.

We have not received any comments from Almarai, Saudia and Nada. Similarly, Peninsula Farms and Al Safi Danone have also been contacted but no responses have been received.

When it comes to food and the coronavirus, the biggest threat is person-to-person contact in grocery stores and other public places. The best way to protect against COVID-19 is by following proper hygiene and sanitation practices.

We encourage our readers to use cashless options and contactless delivery when buying groceries online. When going to a physical store, wear a mask, stay away from other shoppers and always make sure to wash your hands after returning from the store and unpacking your goods.

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