There’s no need to wipe down your grocery packages when you bring them home, according to a new directive issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The federal agency says “there is currently no evidence of human or animal food packaging being associated with the transmission of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.”
According to Fox News, the FDA also said in a statement posted to its website Thursday:
“This particular coronavirus causes respiratory illness and is spread from person-to-person, unlike foodborne gastrointestinal or GI viruses, such as norovirus and hepatitis A, that often make people ill through contaminated food.”
But a recent study suggests that the virus can live on surfaces like plastic and stainless steel for up to three days, and a second study published in February said that other coronaviruses such as SARS or MERS could live on these surfaces for up to nine days, according to another article in Fox News.
To address this, the FDA acknowledges that if people feel more comfortable, they can “wipe down product packaging and allow it to air dry, as an extra precaution,” says Fox News.
Oher tips for safe grocery shopping include:
- Preparing a grocery list in advance so you don’t spend extra time figuring out what you need.
- Wearing a mask, which is now mandatory in many cities, such as New York City.
- Shopping alone and staying at least six feet away from other shoppers.
- Thoroughly washing your hands after returning home and again after putting the groceries away.
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