It is quite fair to say that the Covid-19 crisis has affected almost every aspect of the world as we know it. There is not an industry around the globe that has not been affected in some way by this pandemic. One of the most important industries that have been affected is the food industry. With restaurants shutting down, people cooking at home more, and the supply chain of food being shifted, there has been a lot to process in the world of food manufacturing during Covid-19.
Food Manufacturing During COVID-19
The food industry is essential and it must continue to provide quality food products that are safe. With many states starting to open things back up, there remains a lot of questions for the food manufacturing industry to face. There are also many questions about how to move forward in the manufacturing process. In addition, industry experts wonder whether or not the way we currently do things is safe.
One of the important things that food manufacturing plants must address is the way that they can protect their employees. High touch areas have to be cleaned using sanitizers recommended by the CDC. Risk assessments should be conducted related to social distancing in the production environment. In addition, employees should be monitored for fevers and other symptoms upon arriving to work.
Food and beverage manufacturing companies should develop response actions and plans to help lower the risk. Furthermore, they must prepare for how to deal with the effects of the coronavirus. The plans should include a crisis response team of personnel from every aspect of the business. This team should identify, assess, and manage the potential risk. It also should include a plan for what to do if there is an outbreak among employees in the warehouse.
Transmission of Covid-19 Through Food and Packaging
Another big concern for manufacturers is the questions of whether or not the virus can be transmitted through the food or its packaging. According to the World Health Organization, there is no evidence to support that food and food packaging are a source of the transmission of the coronavirus. This does not mean that coronavirus cannot be spread through packaging, but it is felt that this is unlikely.
Another concern is whether the disease can be transmitted through goods that are imported from other countries. Once again, there is no evidence to support this according to the World Health Organization and the CDC.
Risk of Coronavirus to the Food Industry
The regulatory guidelines that are in place along with third-party audits mean that the risk associated with person-to-person contact in the food manufacturing industry is very low. The requirements for manufacturing address the exclusion of people who have any type of infectious disease from the food processing area.
Overall, there is some comfort in the fact that the food supply chain remains fairly wholesome and safe. This is in part because of the food safety regulations that have long been in place. The current health guidelines provided by the CDC emphasize staying home and social distancing. Moreover, they suggest eating foods in your home as opposed to eating at a restaurant. All of this is in place to help slow the spread of the disease.
One of the main points facing the food manufacturing industry at this time is the increase in demand for shelf-stable foods. The food manufacturers have needed to shift gears in order to respond to these new consumer demands. Manufacturers who focus on restaurant production now must shift gears. To clarify, they must pivot to provide for grocery stores and other areas of the supply chain.
Related Reading: COVID-19: Increase in Online Grocery Shopping
What can Fortress Nutrition LLC do for you?
Rest assured that you’re in good hands with Fortress Nutrition. To learn more about how we tailor our blending, ingredient sourcing, logistics, consumer packaging, and other services to meet customer needs, and to find out how we can partner with you to ensure compliance with new GMO laws, contact us today.