After exporting, variant images are added to main image column automatically. How do I stop it?

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When exporting products to excel, the variant image URLs get filled into the image src column below the main product images. Without changing any data, if you import the same file, the product page will now have all the variant images as main product images. This is a huge oversight and massively annoying when you modify your products primarily through excel.

Has anyone found a workaround for it so that every time I do an export-import it doesn't put variant images in my main product ones?


After some testing I've learned the newly created main image links in the Image src column are almost totally unique, which prevents any kind of 'if matched to list then delete' solutions..