(WLBT) - Dr. Jeffrey VanWingen shared some valuable tips for unpacking your groceries or takeout during the global coronavirus pandemic.
VanWingen demonstrated a "sterile technique" to unpack food. He recommends designating a portion of your kitchen, like one half of a table, as the "clean side."
This area should be thoroughly disinfected before bringing the groceries in.
VanWingen says the food itself is not the biggest problem, as the coronavirus does not live well on food. the problem is the packaging, which can house the virus for days. Coronavirus can live on metal or plastic for up to three days. If possible, he suggests leaving your groceries in the garage or your car for three days. If not, you should disinfect them.
For items like bread, you can empty out the package into a clean container and throw away the packaging. That way, if the plastic around the bread was housing the coronavirus, you wouldn't have any future contact with it.
For items like jars, cans or other sturdy packaging, you can simply disinfect the outside of the sealed container. He says you should make sure to focus on areas you think a person may have touched. The virus is mostly spread through human contact.
With items like fruit, he recommends cleaning them with soapy water for 20 seconds--just like you wash your hands, since you don't want disinfectant directly on your food.
With takeout, he recommends taking the food out and putting it onto a clean plate without touching the food in the process. This way, anything that could be on the wrapper will not transfer to another surface.
If possible, microwave or heat your food. He says even a few seconds in the microwave can kill the coronavirus. Choose hot takeout foods whenever possible.