Viruses have been detected in a limited number of foods. Although methods used to examine these foods were usually restricted to detection of human enteroviruses, animal viruses were found in some meats, milk, and eggs; limitations in methodology may have caused other viruses present to go undetected. As the sensitivity of methods increases, studies are being undertaken to detect a greater variety of human intestinal viruses. Data from these investigations should provide the information needed to determine the incidence and public health significance of food contamination by viruses. In areas where virus-contaminated foods may be expected, washing and heating foods to 70 C should provide reasonable protection against the inadvertent consumption of viruses.

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