H1N1 Influenza Not a Food Safety Concern, Government Confirms

The U.S. government has stated that the current outbreak of H1N1 influenza in humans is not a food safety concern.

“This is not an animal health or food safety issue,” according to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. “This discovery of the H1N1 flu virus is in humans.”

“H1N1 influenza viruses are not transmitted by food,” says the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Partnership for Food Safety Education also reminds consumers that the influenza virus (A/H1N1) is not spread by food. “Eating properly handled and cooked pork and pork products is safe. The H1N1 flu virus is spread from humans to humans,” says PFSE.

PFSE adds the following general advice:

“Frequent proper hand washing is one important way to reduce the risk of illness and to avoid the spread of viruses from one person to another. Wash hands with warm water and soap for a full 20 seconds – about as long as it takes to sing Happy Birthday twice. It is always important to practice safe food handling at home as a way to reduce risk of illness. See fightbac.org for more.”

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Address media inquiries to: Tom Super

Senior Vice President of Communications

[email protected] 202-443-4130