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Don’t squeeze the lemons: COVID-19 food safety tips

BC Centre for Disease Control says you won’t get COVID-19 from food but you should wash fresh produce — and your hands, of course — when you get it home
fresh lemons
Fresh fruit and vegetables should be thoroughly washed with cold water as soon as you get home, says a directive from the BC Centre for Disease Control.

While going to the grocery store — or anywhere, for that matter — may be fraught with peril during the COVID-19 pandemic, the food you get there is safe, according to a statement issued by the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC).

In a FAQ posted to its website, the BCCDC said “it is not believed that the virus is transmitted by eating contaminated food.”

The organization, which manages a range of provincial programs and clinics to help control the spread of disease in British Columbia, said there is no evidence of anyone catching COVID-19 from food, even if it had been handled by a person infected with the respiratory virus. And normal cooking temperatures would likely kill any lingering microbes anyway, according to the FAQ.

Still, the BCCDC does advise that people sick with COVID-19 shouldn’t prepare or handle food for others.

As well, fresh fruit and vegetables should be thoroughly scrubbed under fresh tap water and kept stored separately, away from other raw foods.

As well, BCCDC says at the grocery store, only touch the produce you intend to buy, and practise good hygiene by thoroughly washing your hands after putting away food you purchased and before preparing any food.

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