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IFST SC20 Webinar Series: Coronavirus - Food Safety Risk?

: 8 Apr 2020

Sector: Food & Beverage

Type: Webinar

This webinar is part of a series on ‘The Appliance of Food Science’; the key theme for this year’s Spring Conference.


Date: Wednesday 8th April at 11am-12pm


Speaker: Sterling Crew FIFST, FCIEH, FRSPH, MSOFHT, CEnvH, CSci


Sterling is Chair of the Food Authenticity Network Advisory Board, Co-founder of Kitchen Conversation, Managing Director of SQS ltd., Strategic Advisor at Shield Safety Group and Dynamic Risk Indicator. Sterling is also the Independent Scientific Advisor at Campden BRI and sits on its board. He sits on the audit governance board at Eurofins and is Scientific Advisor for OLIO. Sterling is a past Vice President of the IFST and the recipient of the IFST Honorary Fellowship for 2020. He is a public health and food commentator.


Sterling has over 35 years’ experience working in the food industry in the fields of food safety, governance, horizon scanning and innovation. He started his career in government before a successful track history in retailing, with Marks and Spencer and Tesco. He has also worked in the branded environment for Coca-Cola and Disney, and as a Technical Director for two manufacturers. With experience as a regulator, retailer and manufacturer, he has a unique perspective on food safety in the food supply chain.


Abstract: We live in the most extraordinarily challenging times with the public health threat posed by COVID-19. It’s caused by a novel coronavirus which is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans, so there is still a level of uncertainty. Food has been identified as an unlikely source or route of transmission of the virus. It is a respiratory illness and not known to be transmitted by exposure to food or its packaging.


The global food sector is being impacted both economically and socially, across the entire food chain, in relation to human resources, such as changes in key personnel; supply chains of ingredients, packaging, finished products and equipment; sourcing as manufacturers may need to rely on alternative suppliers at short notice; along with the transportation of people, materials and good. This has the potential to impact negatively on food safety.


The food sector must continue to adhere to good manufacturing and food safety processes and procedures. We are fortunate that food professionals and handlers are already well informed and trained in hand hygiene and cross-contamination in foodservice and factory operations and already have robust controls in place.


Following his presentation, Sterling will be joined by panellists, Andy Kerridge from Wyvern Food Solutions Ltd and Chris Gilbert-Wood Chair IFST Scientific Committee. 



Institute of Food Science & Technology
Phone: +44 (0)20 7603 6316
Email: info@ifst.org
Visit: https://www.ifst.org

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