China faces backlash over wet market horror as WHO under pressure to issue Asia-wide ban

COVID-19 is suspected to have originated in a Chinese wet market and TalkRadio’s Dan Wootton insisted China was ignoring advice from the World Health Organisation (WHO) on food safety in wet markets and this was, in turn, putting millions of people in danger. Mr Wootton also demanded that wet markets in China, Indonesia and Thailand be banned due to his safety concerns. WHO food safety officer Peter Hoejskov defended the organisation and insisted they were working with China to ensure guidelines were followed.



Mr Hoejskov said: “Wet markets are differently managed around the world, that is an important thing to highlight.

“Food markets and wet markets, in general, can be safe as they can provide safe and healthy food to the population.

“They sustain millions of people around the world so just banning wet markets is not a practical option.”

Mr Wootton interrupted and said: “There is a difference between wet markets and food markets.

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“The huge differences with wet markets is that animals are killed and all of the food preparation goes on at the same place as where the food is served.

“That results in mass cross-contamination.”

Mr Wootton also demanded the WHO get tougher with China to prevent further health pandemics in the future.

He said: “With all due respect, don’t you have to get tougher, don’t you have to get tougher on China specifically?

“After the SARS epidemic in 2003, China promised a load of things in relation to the wet markets, loads of things in terms of banning the trade in wildlife.

“As soon as the international eye went off the ball, they reintroduced them all.

“The World Health Organisation has to crack down with China now.”

Mr Hoejskov replied the WHO is working with countries around the world to improve food safety standards in food and wet markets.

Mr Hoejskov said: “The WHO is calling upon all countries to ban the sale of wildlife in wet markets, in any market.

“We are working with all countries around the world in improving food safety practices in markets and wet markets.


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“There is already guidance available.”

Mr Wootton snapped: “But the Chinese Government is ignoring this advice, is that not the issue?”

Mr Hoejskov answered: “The WHO is not imposing restrictions on countries.

“It is working with member states, like China on improving food safety and food safety risk management practices.”

Mr Wootton closed by saying: “It is not just China, it is Indonesia and Thailand as well.

“Personally I want wet markets banned because I do not believe that animals can be killed safely at the same place where the food is served.”

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