Coronaviruses may survive in a freezer up to two years. May be
The COVID-19 coronavirus could last up to two years at below freezing temperatures if it is similar to coronaviruses from the same family.
While some have voiced hope that extreme temperatures may help kill off the virus, one expert warned that the rest of the coronavirus family has the ability to withstand freezing temperatures – and the new form could be equally persistent.
“Research into similar coronavirus strains has shown that, in general, coronaviruses are stable in freezing temperatures and have been shown to survive for up to two years at -20 degrees Celsius,”
Given that studies on SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, two recent coronavirus outbreaks, showed that viruses could survive for up to 72 hours at the average temperature of a fridge (4 degrees Celsius), Dr. Mooty said, “It is safe for us to assume that the virus responsible for COVID-19 might be similarly persistent.”
If the new coronavirus is as persistent as its predecessors, it could survive on surfaces in freezers long after authorities aim to have suppressed the pandemic – living on food packaging in a freezer, for example.
While we do not know the specifics of how long this virus can survive on surfaces, it is best to be safe and act as though it is able to survive on surfaces in freezing temperatures for anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of years.
There is no evidence to suggest that COVID-19 is passed on through food.