Question Can we contract COVID-19 from kitchen personnel coughing or sneezing on/around already cooked food as they prepare it?

Mar 27, 2020
1
1
15
Hello,

I know that when the food is thoroughly cooked, the virus dies due to the heat. However, I'm curious about the food being subject to contamination after being cooked. Let's assume that a chef at a burger restaurant has cooked the burger patty and is now putting all the ingredients into the burger. Or let's say the staff at a fast food resturant is transferring chickens/fries to a box. Let's say they're infected and they cough or sneeze while performing these things and some Covid-19 droplets end up on the these already cooked goods, for example droplets on/inside the burger, droplets on chickens/fries. Can we contract Covid-19 from consuming such goods?
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: oaktowngrrl

LCarlson

Administrator
Nov 12, 2019
78
45
80
It is possible for workers to pass on many viruses in a food preparation environment. Not only the food in question, but contaminated hands handling dishes, cutlery, napkins, take out packaging (including bags), etc.

Not all food is cooked - for instance, a hamburger uses a pre-cooked bun, often fresh vegetables, condiments and a slice of cheese from a cooler. There are a great many points in handling where it is possible for food or the dishes/containers to be contaminated by Covid-19 or any number of other pathogens.

All people involved in food preparation have to undergo food handling and safety training, they wear protective gear and one hopes they are careful not to work while infected. Food safety standards have steadily ramped up over the preceding decades in most countries, but there are limits to what any regulations can achieve.
There is no question that we place a great deal of trust in our food preparation workers.
 
  • Like
Reactions: mark84

ASK THE COMMUNITY