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China criticized for screening packaged foods for coronavirus

China finds coronavirus on food packaging from 20 countries, restricts the import of food products, does not share lab results; attracts criticism from trade partners that demand end to restriction, more information on used testing methods; World Trade Organization (WTO) meeting to reconcile conflict not successful

Packaging sustainability during the pandemic

Consultancy McKinsey & Company publishes paper on consumers’ views towards sustainability in packaging, as influenced by COVID 19 pandemic; urges more focus on proactive communication with consumers and supply chain partners, holistic approach to sustainability and hygiene requirements

Greenpeace report on reusables

Greenpeace launches report on reusables, argues that ‘reusables are doable’ also during the pandemic, which thus should not be used as an excuse to stick with throwaway plastics

Coronavirus detected on food packaging

Packaging of frozen food tested positive for coronavirus in Chinese cities; no evidence of new infections after large-scale testing campaign; experts consider risk of transmission via food and packaging to be low

Zero Waste Nation podcast discusses pandemic and food packaging

Latest episode of podcast produced by Zero Waste Norway features Jane Muncke from the Food Packaging Forum; emphasizes that reusable food containers can be safely cleaned and sanitized in food establishments, no reason to rely solely on single-use items

Over 115 health experts sign statement on safety of reuse

Greenpeace and UPSTREAM publish statement signed by wide-range of doctors and public health researchers, emphasize that reuse systems in stores and restaurants can be implemented safely during COVID-19 pandemic by following standard sanitation laws; single-use items not inherently safer than reusables

ES&T article scrutinizes claims made about reusable bags, COVID-19

Article in Environmental Science and Technology (ES&T) critical of safety concerns raised by industry association related to reusable shopping bags, argues their infrequent handling poses less risk than other transmission pathways; explains that single-use paper bags would be safer option than plastic due to lower virus survival time

WEF webinar discusses plastic pollution and the green recovery

World Economic Forum (WEF) webinar features presentations investigating environmental challenges created by COVID-19 pandemic; discusses effects on the shift away from single-use plastics and on ability to recycle, reviews strategies for moving forward

FPF overview presentation on reuse and COVID-19

Food Packaging Forum (FPF) presentation provides a look into the ongoing multi-stakeholder debate on the safety of reusable food packaging during the COVID-19 pandemic; reviews recommendations from governments, calls for action from industry associations and civil society

Factsheet on safety of reuse during COVID-19 pandemic

UPSTREAM publication answers seven frequently asked questions on the safety of reusable products such as packaging and food service ware; emphasizes that single-use products are not safer than reusable ones, food safety regulations ensure proper cleaning and sanitation of reusable products

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