COVID-19 lockdown and prevention is mandates everyone to stay at home to maintain social distancing. But man has many essential requirements like grocery and medicines. It is thought that Coronavirus is not transmissible via food. Since, it can stay on the surfaces for numerous days that include packaging material or food. Therefore, according to the experts, there are certain food safety practices that we should adopt during this pandemic. It is mandatory to take certain prevention measures while going out for grocery shopping, and storing the groceries at home.
In the big cities it is noticed that online delivery slots have been booked completely, so doing shopping in the grocery store is a necessity at some places. Even though people are trying to minimize these trips, having the contact with outside world cannot be ignored, even if the groceries are delivered to you. This scenario is coming up with certain questions like safety of grocery shopping.
Tips to Stay Safe While Grocery Shopping
Safety measures while visiting a grocery store :
- If you are sick, do not visit supermarket, order online.
- Assure that you keep minimum of six feet distance from other buyers.
- The items which you do not intend to buy do not touch them.
- Go for shopping during lean hours.
- Have a list of items prepared, just enter and get out as soon as possible.
- Try to move cashless, either pay by credit or debit card.
- Wear mask when you step outside your home.
- Wash your hands or use sanitizer after touching any surface.
Rules to be followed while shopping at stores
- Using Face Mask
As we are surrounded by virus these days, face mask plays a significant role to save us from getting infected. It is very crucial to use these masks. However, along with wearing face masks hand hygiene is not ignore-able. Types of masks and proper usage of face can prevent spreading the virus. Before stepping out of the home, make it sure that you fit your mask around the nose and cover your nose and mouth completely. Do not touch your nose and mouth while you are away. The most contaminated part of the mask is the front one. So, after coming back to home do not forget to wash or you can keep it away from anyone’s reach for 1 to 2 days.
- Avoid Closed Spaces
The researchers have found that when coronavirus settles down, it may be airborne for few hours. In a closed place like in retail stores, when an infected person sneezes and leaves anyone entering that area for many hours after him will be at risk of inhaling the virus and getting infected. In India, weekly bazaars can be constructed in vast fields with a certain distance amongst the buyers to avoid close contact with each other.
- List-based buying
In metro cities, many of the apartments have initiated the method where the inhabitants are providing their needs in the form of the lists along with their address, mobile number mentioned on it. To avoid crowd building, they collect it in lean hours. To eliminate man to man contacts, authorities may practice this enforcement.
- Billing is completely unsafe
The billing at the cash counter is the most endangered activity during shopping, in this epidemic. This happens because both the cashier and the buyer are in close contact with each other. In the Kirana Stores, where the owners are the cashiers as well. They manage the products and the currencies with same hands; it increases the chances of spreading virus. The solution here could be not to take the change back and usage of digital payments. The close contact can be avoided by taking the delivery of the product from distance.
Safeguard measures after coming back to home after Grocery Shopping
• Once you reach home after doing groceries, leave the shopping containers outside and take a shower. Read about Disposal of face masks.
• Experts say that there risks associated with packaging should also be considered. However, there have been no cases of coronavirus, due to contamination from containers. They also mentioned that if you wash your hands after every time you touch the packaging, you will be safe.
• Researchers have concluded that coronavirus can stay on plastic for 72 hours, on cardboard for 24 hours. It is always advisable to make use of these items after this duration. Make sure that while unpacking, you do not touch your face.
• Vegetables and fruits need not to be washed with detergent. You can make use of ozone-based vegetable/fruit cleaner. You can also soak vegetables and fruits in vinegar or lemon-salt water for few hours then leave to dry.
It must be considered by the shoppers that shopping is not a leisure activity. They must reduce the frequency of shopping, and it should be done by pooling, avoiding close contacts, using protective gears like sanitizers and masks, restricting the expeditions of shopping. It must be glanced that the person who is having strong immunity can recover from coronavirus influence. Therefore, the old age people must avoid to go outside the home during lockdown, as their immunity gets weakened and cannot recover easily from this deadly virus.
The Government must restrict the discipline of shopping, training people about sanitization, facilitating digital payments and home deliveries.
Read about some easy indoor activity to stay fit.