The sudden changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic affected all parts of the restaurant industry. From fast food chains to fine dining establishments, restaurateurs have either closed or shifted entirely to a takeout and delivery model. However, when restaurants are finally able to open for dining again, what products will the foodservice industry lean on to maintain a heightened level of proper hygiene?
COVID-19 is not considered a foodborne gastrointestinal virus (like norovirus or hepatitis A that make people ill through contaminated food). According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. This includes between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet), and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or spits. Although foodborne exposure to this virus is not known to be a route of transmission, the fact that virus is thought to spread mainly from close contact by droplets, it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their mouth, nose or possibly their eyes.