Safe Grocery Shopping During a Pandemic

bluapple coronavirus fresh produce fruit grocery shopping vegetables

If you’re doing your part to help “flatten the curve,” then you’re following the ordinances and directives that have been instituted by public health leaders by following one, potentially life-saving instruction: you’re staying home—and hunkering down—for the long haul. The fast-spreading strand of coronavirus can’t necessarily be stopped: however, slowing the spread of the virus ensures that the most treacherous cases can be treated by medical professionals, and will hopefully keep medical facilities running as efficiently as possible without being overrun.

Of course, if you’ve been quarantined for a while, it’s probably safe to say that you might be going a little stir-crazy at this point. After all, there’s only so many times that you can binge-watch your favorite shows on myriad streaming services before you start contracting some cabin fever—especially when you have to preserve as much bandwidth as possible to keep working from home online. 

All of this is difficult enough without having to navigate cooking nearly every one of your own meals during the quarantine, too; with most restaurants doing their due diligence by shutting their doors, you’re now depending on yourself for quality nutrition more than you ever have before. Read on for some tips on how to keep yourself safe for whenever you venture beyond your living room borders to purchase your produce.

Indecent Exposure

One of the most vicious traits of this virulent strain is its ability to stick to surfaces for hours once it’s made contact. That means that there are a few key rules you must follow whenever you're at the store:

  • Curbside Pick-up & Delivery: this sounds incongruous with actually getting some fresh groceries, but call around and see if your local grocery store can deliver instead. When you order, far fewer people—and most likely, just one or two dedicated and assuredly virus-free employees continually washing their hands—will be in contact with your food before it’s delivered.

  • Plan for off-peak: if delivery isn’t an option, then make sure that you schedule your grocery trips for off-peak hours. Since you’re working from home, you can set your own schedule—or at least plan around your scheduled Zoom meeting—when you set out for the store. Check online to see if your local grocery store is operating under different hours, as well: some stores are either preserving early morning hours for senior shoppers or closing early in order to address their re-stocking needs. 

  • Cart for one, please: while sticking together at all times is a prime directive for the fantastical apocalyptic genre, it’s a poor strategy during a pandemic. The key is to limit your potential exposure to the virus—or to limit any chance of you spreading it if you’re an asymptomatic carrier—so go it alone, then make your way straight home. Wash your hands before your trip, sanitize every surface you can during your trip, then wash your hands after your safe return.

  • Preserve your fresh produce: one way to reduce the number of shopping trips you have to make is to simply maintain the longevity of your food more efficiently. Order a Bluapple Ultimate Starter Pack to keep your produce fresher for longer: Bluapple products incorporate the active ingredient of Sodium Permanganate—in concert with zeolite as its carrier—to eradicate the ethylene gas that ravages your produce. Whip up some larger dishes that use up more of your perishable ingredients, then freeze them for later. Not only will you ensure that your household won’t suffer from any undue food waste, but you’ll also save yourself a lot of time and work throughout the week—instead, spend that time learning an instrument, reading a book, or just doing absolutely nothing because you’re entitled to a bit of a break during this stressful situation. 

Stronger Together, and Nutrition that’s Better

Although it can feel unfair that healthy people have to remain inside and stay at home, the importance of self-quarantine at this difficult time can’t be overstated. Avoid gathering in large groups, make sure to maintain at least a six-foot distance from those not within your immediate household, and absolutely avoid any unnecessary contact with the elderly or immuno-suppressed. However, although some in-person contact might be insupportable at the present time, it’s imperative to take care of your emotional health as much as your physical. So, take a deep breath, give your grandma a video-call, and leave that screen on while you make some delicious, nutritious meals together—your mind and body will thank you.

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