FDA COVID-19 FOOD HANDLING GUIDELINES AND RECOMMENDATIONS.
During the COVID-19 crisis how safe is take-out or food prepared in restaurants? The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has produced a Q&A on the safety of food products.
FIRST: CDC recommends the following everyday preventive actions for everyone, including service industry workers and customers:
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Stay home when you are sick.
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing our nose, coughing or sneezing.
If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
Anyone handling, preparing and serving food should always follow safe food handling procedures, such as washing hands and surfaces often.
FREQUENT COVID QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Q: Can I get sick with COVID-19 from touching food, the food packaging, or food contact surfaces, if the coronavirus was present on it?
A: Currently, there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. Like other viruses, it is possible that the virus that causes COVID-19 can survive on surfaces or objects. For that reason, it is critical to wash your hands often, including utensils.
Q: Can I get COVID-19 from a food worker handling my food?
A: Currently, there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. However, the virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading from person-to-person in some communities in the U.S. The CDC recommends that if you are sick, stay home until you are better and no longer pose a risk of infecting others.
Q: Since restaurant workers and other service industry employees have ongoing contact with the public, are there any special precautions these workers should take to avoid becoming sick with a respiratory illness, such as wearing masks?
A: CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone with COVID-19 in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
Q: Is food imported to the United States from China and other countries affected by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), at risk of spreading COVID-19?
A: Currently, there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods, and there are no reported cases of COVID-19 in the United States associated with imported goods.
Q: Are food products produced in the United States a risk for the spread of COVID-19?
A: There is no evidence to suggest that food produced in the United States can transmit COVID-19.
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Frequently Asked Questions