No evidence of food packaging virus spread

People should wash their hands after returning from shopping and again after putting groceries away.
People should wash their hands after returning from shopping and again after putting groceries away.

There's no evidence to date that coronavirus has been transferred via food packaging but experts urge people to wash their hands thoroughly after touching takeaways and groceries to reduce the risk of spread.

There's also no evidence the virus is transmitted through eating food, with the spread of respiratory droplets the most common way of catching it, followed by people touching objects then their face.

"Wash your hands immediately when you return home from shopping and again after putting away groceries," Food Safety Information Council chair Cathy Moir said.

The council's recommendations include using the plastic bags provided when shopping for fresh produce, not handling fruit and vegetables then putting them back on display and keeping shopping bags off food preparation benches.

Ms Moir said the other important advice to heed was to avoid food poisoning.

"We will be likely to eat more home-delivered food in coming times, whether it is online grocery deliveries or takeaway from your favourite restaurant," she said.

"Make sure hot food or food that needs refrigeration or freezing isn't left more than an hour on the doorstep."

Australian Associated Press