LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) – Restaurants in Tampa Bay are increasing their food safety protocols in an effort to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services sent notices to more than 40,000 food businesses across the state, urging them to follow food safety guidelines to reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
“As the Florida’s food safety and consumer protection agency, we’re working to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus in high-traffic areas like grocery stores, convenience stores, and gas stations — places that millions of Floridians visit every day,” said Florida Agriculture Commissioner, Nikki Fried. “As confirmed cases of coronavirus increase in Florida and across the country, everything counts when it comes to limiting the spread of viruses, like sanitizing shopping carts at the store and using hand sanitizer after touching hard surfaces.”
The Joinery, a new food hall in Lakeland is following FDACS’ recommendation.
“We’ve supplied the standard information of proper food handling from Servsafe and from the DDPR and we have also suggested and we’ve received some ideas from some of those vendors from additional measures we can take like sanitizing and disinfecting the commonly touched items,” said owner Jonathan Bucklew.
Bucklew says the food hall is constantly sanitizing frequently used surfaces, constantly cleaning the restrooms, and disinfecting commonly touched areas like door handles.
“Additionally, we are using the sanitzers more on the common touched areas and more consistently and more frequently. Everything from the handles on the sinks in the bathroom, to the toilet handles to the toilet seats. Everything from the tables and handles on the doors, we are sanitizing those more frequently than normal just as an additional measure,” Bucklew said.
There are currently no reports of the coronavirus being transmitted through food.