Food and COVID-19 Spread

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Buying Groceries and COVID-19

By now, you’ve probably heard that the main way to avoid the coronavirus is to minimize contact with people, not food.

So far, there is NO evidence to suggest that the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is transmitted through food or causes severe illness by infecting the gut. As for surfaces like food packaging, the virus seems to die off quickly. And even if you’ve touched a package or another surface that might be contaminated, washing your hands with soap or using hand sanitizer should do the trick.

“The first thing is focusing on what we know about how people are getting sick,” says Benjamin Chapman, a professor and food safety extension specialist at NC State University who helps food companies, supermarkets, and restaurants minimize the risk of foodborne illness caused by germs like Salmonella and E. coli.

And when it comes to risk factors for COVID-19, “at the top of that list is being around or close to someone who has symptoms, is asymptomatic, or is pre-symptomatic.”

Here are 3 reasons why avoiding people, not food is good advice during this crisis.

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Spreading COVID-19