jump to navigation

Safe food shopping guidelines March 30, 2020

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

I’m sure many of us are following these already but no harm to have them put together…


On the IT from IGHN, in partnership with the Environmental Health Association of Ireland and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health in the UK.

Guide to safe shopping during the coronavirus

The Irish Global Health Network has published a VERY IMPORTANT list of guidelines on how to stay safe and protect yourself from picking up the virus while food shopping.

The group warned on Monday that the “disregard of hygiene standards in supermarkets across Ireland” was causing alarm among environmental health professionals who say they are currently high-risk sites of infection for the Coronavirus.

“We know that the virus can survive on hard surfaces such as plastic and stainless steel for up to 72 hours,” Environmental Health Specialist and Irish Global Health Network Spokesperson, Niall Roche said. “It can live on cardboard for up to 24 hours. Supermarkets should adhere to the same guidance and practices that are being exercised in healthcare facilities, particularly for vulnerable shoppers.”

The follow is a list of measures for during shopping:

  • Try to avoid peak shopping times, although it may now be difficult to determine when these are.
    Maintain a safe social distance of two metres from all other shoppers and staff – this includes routes into and out of the store. You may have to queue outside before gaining access. If other shoppers are closing in on your safe social distancing space, move away or remind them of the requirement in a calm, friendly and polite manner.
  • If you need to handle a basket or trolley, ask if it has been sanitised since last being used. If not, sanitise using either your own sanitiser or that provided by the store.
  • Sanitise your hands when you enter the store, ideally with your own sanitiser or, if available, that provided by the store. Avoid contact with surfaces as much as possible.
  • Don’t delay while shopping or chat with neighbours/ friends/store staff.
  • If you are planning to remain at home for long periods of time, consider buying non-perishable foods such as canned goods or dry mixes that don’t require refrigeration, such as ready-to-eat canned meats, fruit and vegetables. But make sure you buy things you like and will use!
  • Try to use only one hand (your non-dominant hand) to pick up goods and place into your bag/basket/trolley. This is to avoid contamination of your hands.
  • If possible, try to minimise direct hand contact with food by using available tongs and utensils. While you may ordinarily avoid plastic-wrapping, now might be the time to stick to wrapped/packaged goods.
  • Don’t touch your mouth, nose or eyes – this is the main reason for suggesting that you pick up goods with your non-dominant hand.
  • Make a contactless payment if possible, be vigilant when maintaining distance and avoid chatting to service desk/ check out staff.
  • Sanitise your hands on leaving the shop (if possible) and again when you get into your car, if you use a car.

After shopping

  • If shopping for a vulnerable person, leave the shopping on the doorstep, ring the bell or phone them and stand back while they collect it.
  • Wash your hands immediately when you return home.
  • Plan how you will deal with your shopping in advance of coming home.
  • Designate a cleared, disinfected area to sort out your shopping.
  • Prior to stocking your fridges and cupboards, wipe shelving with sanitiser and a paper towel, then discard.
  • Coronavirus can survive on hard surfaces, so wipe the outside of all canned/hard surface pack goods (tetra packs) with a paper towel/warm soapy water, sanitise (following the manufacturer’s guidance). Alternatively leave non-perishable foods in a safe place for 72 hours.
  • Remove outer food packaging and discard, being careful to limit handling of the inner packaging of items such as yoghurts.


1. EWI - March 30, 2020

Wipe your phones too!


WorldbyStorm - March 30, 2020

+1 very true


2. GearóidGaillimh - March 30, 2020

This is very useful. Most of my relatives are cocooned so I’m doing the messages for them now. I tried to set up online shopping for them but every slot is booked out three weeks in advance.

Liked by 1 person

WorldbyStorm - March 31, 2020

Mentioned on another thread, but worth adding here, ALDI now has screens around the till staff which is a great innovation (and must stay after the crisis regardless). Also ALDI in East Wall this morning was incredibly quiet. Social distancing no problem at all. Soap to be had. Though no floor wipes.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: