Thai Union donates tuna to coronavirus epicenter in China

Published on
February 18, 2020

Thai Union has sent more than 52,000 cans of King Oscar tuna as humanitarian assistance to Wuhan, the city currently at the center of the COVID-19/coronavirus outbreak in China, Thai Union said in a statement on 14 February.

The value of the shipments was not provided.

The donation by Thai Union China, a subsidiary of the tuna giant, was conducted through a local logistics service and an online food delivery company in China.

The first shipment was delivered to people working on the Wuhan Leishenshan Hospital Project, one of two new hospitals being built for COVID-19 patients. The second was given to more than 15 hospitals in Wuhan, including Wuhan Union Hospital – the main hospital treating people that have contracted the deadly virus.

Thai Union Global Director of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability Darian McBain said the company believes it has a responsibility to provide humanitarian assistance through what it calls “tuna aid,” to help support people in regions where the company operates.

In response to the epidemic, other Chinese seafood companies have also been donating seafood to the hardest-hit areas, a move that also helps them meet regional and national government appeals to patriotism.

The rapid outbreak of the coronavirus, with an origin reportedly tracked to a seafood market in Wuhan, has killed more than 1,700 people in mainland China, with many more cases confirmed in China and other countries, including in the United States, Japan, Thailand, and Germany, South China Morning Post reported 18 February.

The city of Wuhan is a major logistics hub for China’s seafood trade in the central region of the country, and the virus hit the market at its busiest time of the year. The city is also central to the trade in freshwater species like crabs given its location in Hubei Province, at the heart of China’s freshwater crustacean industry.    

Photo courtesy of KernelNguyen/Shutterstock 

Contributing Editor reporting from Hanoi, Vietnam

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