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Glad You Asked: Is it safe to order takeout?

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Q: If restaurant dining rooms need to be shut down because of coronavirus, is it still safe to order delivery, carryout and from drive-thrus?

Yes, it's safe – and during this unprecedented difficult time for local food establishments, it's even encouraged.

There is no evident risk of contracting coronavirus, more accurately known as COVID-19, by ordering and eating properly-handled food from a restaurant while their dining room is closed, said Javid Bedard, the environmental health manager for Grand Forks Public Health.

"The concern with the food establishments is the social contact," said Grand Forks Public Health Environmental Health Coordinator Javin Bedard. "It's not a food-borne transmission, so the effort is about increasing that social distancing and not having people congregate in a sitting area or standing in line together."

Bedard said the most important thing diners can do to protect themselves from catching or spreading COVID-19 is washing their hands before eating and after touching common surfaces, maintaining distance between people and avoiding groups, practicing proper hygiene, and refraining from touching their eyes, nose and face.


"As far as the food goes, the food codes and food handling codes are intended to protect against bacteria and viruses," Bedard said. "It's not a known food transmission. It's all about social distancing."

Glad You Asked is a segment in the Grand Forks Herald. Do you have a locally interesting question you'd like answered? Submit it to letters@gfherald.com and we'll consider it. Be sure to put "Glad You Asked" in the subject line.

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