FDA: No Need to Wipe Down Food Packaging During Coronavirus Pandemic

Shopping for Food During the COVID-19 Pandemic –

Information for Consumers

As grocery shopping remains a necessity during this pandemic, many people have questions about how to shop safely. We want to reassure consumers that there is currently no evidence of human or animal food or food packaging being associated with transmission of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. 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.

Although your grocery store may be temporarily out of certain products, there are no nationwide shortages of food. Food production and manufacturing are spread throughout the United States. During this pandemic, consumers are getting most of their food from grocery stores, and many stores have modified their operating hours to allow for more time to restock shelves and clean. In addition, many stores are providing special hours for seniors or other high-risk individuals to shop and are offering pick-up and delivery services. Check the store’s website or call the store to learn more.

To help protect yourself, grocery store workers, and other shoppers, it is important to keep a few things in mind:

  1. Prepare a shopping list in advance. Buy just 1 to 2 weeks-worth of groceries at a time. Buying more than you need can create unnecessary demand and temporary shortages.
  2. Wear a face covering or mask while you are in the store. Some stores and localities may require it. Check your state, county or city guidelines for any other requirements.
  3. Carry your own wipes, or use one provided by the store to wipe down the handles of the shopping cart or basket. If you use reusable shopping bags, ensure they are cleaned or washed before each use.
  4. Practice social distancing while shopping – keeping at least 6 feet between you, other shoppers, and store employees. Keep your hands away from your face.
  5. Wash your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds when you return home and again after you put away your groceries.
  6. Again, there is no evidence of food packaging being associated with the transmission of COVID-19. However, if you wish, you can wipe down product packaging and allow it to air dry, as an extra precaution.

As always, it is important to follow these food safety practices to help prevent foodborne illness:

  1. Before eating, rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running tap water, including those with skins and rinds that are not eaten. Scrub firm produce with a clean produce brush. For canned goods, remember to clean lids before opening.
  2. When unpacking groceries, refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, and other perishables—like berries, lettuce, herbs, and mushrooms—within 2 hours of purchasing.
  3. Regularly clean and sanitize kitchen counters using a commercially available disinfectant product or a DIY sanitizing solution with 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) unscented liquid chlorine bleach to 1 gallon of water or 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of water. WARNING: Do not use this solution or other disinfecting products on food.
  4. Always keep in mind the basic 4 food safety steps — Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill.

Food is a source of comfort, as well as nourishment for you and your family – especially now – and we hope this advice will help you continue to buy groceries with care and confidence.


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  • In some relatively topical scientific news, there’s an interesting contact-tracing study out of China, suggesting that the coronavirus spreads primarily through extended proximity to an infected person – I think very similar to the results of the Heinsberg study out of Germany.

    Note that while the flow from air conditioning appears to have contributed to infecting people as far as about 4 meters from the carrier, infection was not in the air conditioning system itself and did not spread to adjacent tables not in the path of air flow. Restaurant staff who served the tables apparently did not become infected, presumably because they had only short-term exposure to the infected person and the contaminated air flow.

    How coronavirus infected some, but not all, in a China restaurant
    > https://news.abs-cbn.com/overseas/04/21/20/how-coronavirus-infected-some-but-not-all-in-a-china-restaurant

    For reference, an article about the German study:

    Heinsberg study virologist doesn’t think shopping is especially risky
    https://www.businessinsider.com/death-rate-german-laboratory-city-5x-less-than-national-average-2020-4

    I think this provides some reassurance that going out shopping, or to pick up food at a restaurant, is not particulary risky – though that should still be done in conjunction with wearing masks, and following contact and hand sanitation procedures, in order to minimize chances of either transmitting or contracting infection.

    As a cautionary example though possibly an exceptional one, a case that had seemed mysterious was tracked through contact tracing to surface contamination:

    MYSTERY SOLVED: Source of coronavirus exposure discovered for Charlotte woman who hadn’t left her house in weeks.

    ‘UPDATE: MYSTERY SOLVED
    Remember that trip to the pharmacy three weeks before testing positive? That March 18 errand was her last into the outside world.

    An epidemiologist called Brummert Thursday, April 21 with the news: They had traced her exposure back to the keypad at the pharmacy.’

    > https://www.wcnc.com/article/news/health/coronavirus/charlotte-woman-hasnt-left-her-house-in-three-weeks-but-tested-positive-for-covid-19/275-77707b1d-fd2f-4a36-bf3e-16beca4104c4

  • QUESTIONS:

    The Javits Convention Center in Manhattan was converted into a makeshift hospital.
    The McCormick Convention Center in Chicago was converted into a makeshift hospital.
    WHERE ARE THE PHOTOS OF THESE MAKESHIFT HOSPITALS PACKED WITH PATIENTS?

    IN ORDINARY HOSPITALS ARE OCCUPANCY RATES ANY HIGHER THAN USUAL?

    WHAT IS THE AGE BREAK DOWN OF PEOPLE SUPPOSEDLY DYING OF THE COVID VIRUS?

    HOW MANY DECEASED FROM COVID INVOLVED PEOPLE WITH UNDERLYING CONDITIONS SUCH AS HEART DISEASE, OBESITY AND CANCER?

    WHAT IS THE OVERALL DEATH RATE FOR THE LAST THREE MONTHS?
    HAS THAT OVERALL DEATH RATE GONE UP OR DOWN?

    HOW MANY PEOPLE TEST POSITIVE FOR COVID BUT HAVE NO OR FEW SYMPTOMS?

    SINCE MANY COUNTRIES HAVE FOUND CHINESE MADE MEDICAL SUPPLIES, TESTS AND EQUIPMENT TO BE UNRELIABLE HOW CAN WE BE CERTAIN WHAT THE TRUE INFECTION
    RATE IS?

    Poverty and Unemployment lead to worsened public health.
    There are higher rates of alcohol abuse, over eating, sedentary behavior (people become couch potatoes),drug abuse, smoking, isolation, depression and suicide.
    WHAT ARE THE NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF QUARANTINES AND LOCKDOWNS VERSUS THE ACTUAL VIRUS ITSELF?

    • WOULD YOU HAVE RATHER NOT BUILT ENOUGH FACILITIES? OVERBUILDING FACILITIES HAS NOTHING TO WITH POVERTY AND UNEMPLOYMENT. LOL

  • Survey: Less Than Half of L.A. County Still Has a Job After Coronavirus
    A survey by the USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research reports that “less than half of Los Angeles County residents — 45% compared with 61% in mid-March — still hold a job” due to the impact of coronavirus, the Los Angeles Timesreports.

    California has drawn praise for being one of the first states to declare an emergency, and to issue shelter-at-home orders. However, the economic impact of that public health response has been devastating, the USC Dornsife poll suggests.
    The poll also measured the national economic impact of the coronavirus, according to the Times, which noted that as many as 25.5 million have lots jobs — with the impact worse among Latino and black residents nationwide:

    Less than half of L.A. County residents still have jobs amid coronavirus…
    Only 45% of Los Angeles County residents are still employed, a national survey released Friday shows. Meanwhile,…

    Nationally, 15% of white people said they had lost their jobs, while 18% of Latinos and 21% of black people reported job losses.

    …In L.A. County, people estimated their chances of running out of money within the next three months at 33%, and those who are currently employed estimated their chances of losing their jobs at 22%. Nationally, those measures were 22% and 15%, respectively.

    So in Los Angeles County, the COVID Hoax has wiped out 25% of the jobs!
    https://www.breitbart.com/economy/2020/04/17/survey-less-than-half-of-l-a-still-has-a-job-after-coronavirus/

    Stanford University antibody testing finds California virus infections are 50 TIMES higher than reported – suggesting COVID-19 is more widespread across the US than previously thought
    Stanford University scientists tested 3,300 people recruited via online ads in Santa Clara county to be tested for coronavirus antibodies
    Between 2.5 and 5.2 percent of those tested were positive
    Antibody testing detects who has contracted the virus and developed immune cells that may protect them from reinfection
    Questions remain about the reliability of tests and how much protection coronavirus antibodies offer
    Antibody testing suggests 4% of Californians have had coronavirus
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-8231115/Antibody-research-reveals-coronavirus-widespread-anticipated.html

    Montana physician Dr. Annie Bukacek discusses how COVID 19 death certificates are being manipulated

  • It has been so long that I have stayed at home, the next time I go into the grocery store is going to be just like “Le Li sees supermarket for first time” from the movie, Heaven & Earth, one of my favorite scenes ever of sheer culture shock. The thrilling kind of cultural shock, though. When Ralphs Market becomes the golden cornucopia, as if a door opened into some psychedelic orchestral astral plane of unimaginable orgasmic delight, crammed to the brim with Goodies.

  • The mark of a true Marxist economy is periodic food shortages.
    Thanks to Free Trade with China and Democratic Party servility to Beijing American, consumers can experience all of the joys of a Marxist economy.

    • Except they won’t, the American free enterprise/capitalistic system responds very well to upsets in the marketplace.

    • Just can’t resist, like the NXian culties, thinking your special ideas from your revered sources need to be promoted to everyone, even when off-topic and inappropriate – can you?

      Speaking of servility, just this Tuesday, POTUS said of the country lead by his off-stated “friend” Xi the CCP General Secretary:

      “Well, I did a trade deal with China, where China is supposed to be spending $250 billion in our country. I’d love to have a good relationship with China.”

      I’ve been following the rise of China, often accomplished through manipulative and devious means, and warning about it, for decades.* I watched ideological attack dogs of your ilk turned loose on those who wanted to keep manufacturing in America back then – don’t you now wish the Democrats had won that fight? Here are a few examples over time, including more recent inconvenient truth:

      Bush Supports Shift of Jobs Overseas
      Feb 10, 2004
      https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2004-feb-10-na-bushecon10-story.html

      GOP blocks Democrats’ jobs [anti-]outsourcing bill
      Sep 28, 2010
      https://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2010/09/28/gop-blocks-democrats-jobs-outsourcing-bill/

      Senate Republicans block bill to end tax breaks for outsourcing
      Jul 30, 2014
      https://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/213780-republicans-block-bill-to-end-tax-breaks-for-outsourcing

      Even the CBO Says the GOP Tax Reform Will Incentivize Corporate Offshoring
      April 23, 2018
      https://prospect.org/power/even-cbo-says-gop-tax-reform-will-incentivize-corporate-offshoring/

      Under Trump, US jobs are moving overseas even faster than ever before
      https://qz.com/1144201/under-trump-us-jobs-are-moving-overseas-even-faster-than-before/

      * Here’s a comment on an article that I wrote almost exactly decade ago:

      Article Discussion: Road to prosperity begins with commitmentment to buy American
      By PeaceMaker on April 19th, 2010

      Interesting to see that some would rather buy products from the People’s Republic of China – a communist dictatorship that exercises repressive control over many aspects of their society, including a policy of artificially suppressed currency exchange rates that may actually be a form of calculated strategic economic warfare against us – and which sometimes come from factories controlled by their People’s Liberation Army, and/or made under abusive slave labor conditions, rather than purchase products that might be made by American union workers.

      • The Dumbocrats want to get the union vote, that’s why they support U.S. manufacturing. Your position from a decade ago matches Trump’s decades long position, so I’m sure you’ll be voting for him in November, correct?

        • US Manufacturing? What does the US manufacture? Apart from weaponry? does chlorinating factory-raised chickens for home consumption and export count as a manufacturing base? Just like most of the planet, everything you play with was made in China.

          All your freedoms, gained by past generations who are surely spinning in their graves, especially the freedom of speech – squandered on moronic name-calling and the kind of reasoning that makes any non-American squirm with embarrassment. Things will never be the same for much of the world. Including the Deluded States Of America. What a shower of ignorance this report displays at a time desperately needful of mutual cooperation and clear-thinking.

      • AnonyMaker,

        “They“ never have a true response or rebuttal for anything you post….

        We both know the 4th grade insults and vulgar language are coming around the corner…….

        “Falsehoods can never compete with facts.”

    • #5 is mentioned because even though food packaging might not have been contaminated, doors, carts, freezer handles, checkouts, etc. might have been.

      As for #6, some may wish to be extra cautious – nothing wrong with that. In a tiered approach, I’d recommend it for those in high-risk categories who need to take the greatest care not to get infected.

      • If all of those other things could have been contaminated, the food packaging might be as well. You’re just talking out of the Libtard side of your mouth. LOL

        If we want to protect the vulnerable, then everybody should be extra cautious. Nice try, though. LOL

        • Ok, you proved your point. You can now buy as many guns as you want and go to worship at church shortly thereafter. What say they, hillbilly?

          • Girl Scout,

            You always make me laugh with your pithy & witty remarks…..

            I understand you no longer like me, but I wanted to simply let you know you always make me laugh.

            Have a great day!!! & stay safe!

        • I served as a nuclear, biological and chemical warfare defense training officer in the US Army for nearly a decade of active and reserve service, so I write based on understanding how these things actually work.

          With SARS-CoV-2 the best estimates are a person would have to pick up a viral load of between 50 and 300 virons to be likely to become infected. So as a practical matter there is not much concern about minimal trace contamination, and instead on avoiding possible sources of gross contamination – and also, in general, on the highest risks for contamination.

          In the case of packaged food, for instance, the only person likely to have touched the item prior to the purchaser is a stocker, several hours to several days prior. All the other sorts of surfaces I mentioned may have been constantly touched by dozens to hundreds of people, and are thus much more likely vectors of disease transmission.

          Comments like yours obviously speak for a juvenile level of ignorance, that unfortunately Frank has let his site be dragged down to.

          • I was a highly trained nuclear power officer and the ship’s CRA (Chemistry and Radiological Controls Assistant). I have more common sense in my pinky than you do in your entire body. All it takes is one minimum wage grocery stocker with no signs of illness but carrying the coronavirus to sneeze on something. The turnover in grocery stores is so fast, especially now, the virus may have been there for mere minutes before someone picks it up. Is that enough for “50 to 300 virons?” It’s called making things “sailor proof,” you don’t have a stitch of common sense. THAT is how things actually work. No wonder the people who can actually think join the Navy. LOL

            Comments like YOURS obviously speak for a juvenile level of ignorance, that unfortunately Frank has let his site be dragged down to. LOL

          • Thanks for sharing and explaining things!!!

            Sincerely my friend.

            You have the patience of a saint to still stand up and get out the facts!!!!!!

            They don’t even understand your dogged- determination is meant to help and comes from the heart.

            You sincerely are a good Christian!!!! Your family and friends are lucky to have you in their life.

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