Going to the supermarket requires you to touch surfaces shared by other people — shopping trolleys,
baskets and self-serve checkouts to name a few.
Meru Sheel, an infectious disease epidemiologist from the Australian National University, said that made it difficult to follow the health
advice to not touch hard surfaces, where the virus can survive for several days.
Cathy Moir, a microbiologist from the CSIRO who specialises in food safety, said the risk exposure to coronavirus from fresh fruit and vegetables was low.
“The coronavirus is a respiratory virus, it’s not a food-borne virus. If you
actually eat it, then it is not known to be transmitted,” she said.
Ms Moir said while you would not contract the virus by eating it, there was a slight chance it could be transmitted via surface contact.
Dr Sheel said the standard food safety advice — that fruit and vegetables should be washed before consumption — applied.
“I think, where possible, washing your fruit and vegetables is advised, as with a lot of bugs anyway,” she said.
“I haven’t seen any evidence appear of [coronavirus] outbreaks being caused by contaminated vegetables.”