The World Health Organization said Friday that wet markets that sell live animals, like the one many believe coronavirus originated from, should remain open but with improved regulations, according to Time.
Peter Ben Embarek, an expert in food safety and animal diseases at WHO, said live animal markets provide food and jobs for millions of people around the world. He added that officials should work on improving their conditions as opposed to making them illegal.
"Food safety in these environments is rather difficult and therefore it's not surprising that sometimes we also have these events happening within markets," Embarek said.
Embarek said there are several ways to increase hygiene and food safety standards, such as separating live animals from humans is a way to reduce disease transmission risk. He also pointed out that it's still uncertain whether the Wuhan wet market that many have called the origin of coronavirus is the real source.
He also pointed to studies that showed coronavirus can also jump other animals like dogs, cats, ferrets and tigers.
“We don’t want to create a new reservoir in animals that could continue to create infections in humans,” Embarek said.
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