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Janice Hall: Farmers Market Operating Guidelines During COVID-19 Outbreak

These are based on the Potential risks associated with COVID-19 also Known as the coronavirus and its impact on the Health and the economic well-being of our farmers, The next few segments will Provide refresher practices and give you some enhanced best practices to have in place to protect You and your customers Now, let’s look at some Ways that you can protect yourself and your customers, Farmers, vendors and Market staff should wear food-grade, gloves and Change them frequently as soon as they become Soiled or contaminated Make sure that you are washing your hands before putting on a new pair of gloves.

Next, you should increase the number of hand-washing stations. For customers and vendors, and also remember to post Signs reminding everyone to wash their hands The picture on this slide. Shows you an example of a hand-washing station that You can make yourself at home if you don’t have access to one. Each farmer should have Soap, paper towels and hand wipes such as Wet Ones and hand sanitizers for their booth.

Now there is a difference between hand, wipes and disinfectant wipes. Please note that disinfectant wipes such as Clorox or Lysol Wipes should not be used on your hands or any surface that will come in contact with the food. Please read the label to make sure that you’re following instructions for proper and safe use. You want to make sure that You limit the customers from handling the produce. One good way to do this is to have all of your foods pre-packaged To slow down the spread of This virus and other bacteria limit the customers from Touching the product, All foods should be pre-packaged to eliminate potential Contamination at the market Examples would be pre-packing.

Breads and baked goods Pre-packing all foods, Will help in this effort Now how your booth is Stocked and positioned can make a big difference. In you doing your part to keep things safe, Let’s take a look at your Farmers market booth is yours, ready Institute six to 10 feet of space between vendor booths, where possible. Now, if you’re unsure about How much space this is, you can simply stretch Your arms side to side like an airplane or you Can do six to 10 paces or footsteps toe to toe The virus? Has minimum Ability to spread in the air It goes into the air and it Settles onto the surfaces You can also separate, but Don’t cross-contaminate Separate the duties at your booth, which means the person handling the money should be separate from the Person handling the produce.

You want to try to segregate the duties behind the market table so that the virus does not spread through currency. It is a good idea to Designate one individual to handle the money, tokens and coupons while others are handling The produce being sold Again, wear food-grade, gloves and change those gloves frequently So we’ve been hearing about practice social distancing with the coronavirus, but how does that apply? To a farmers market: Well, we need to limit bare hand, contact no shaking hands and no hugs Handshakes, hugs and close distancing, while talking to each other Is a part of our culture, however, to prevent the Spread of this virus, we will have to practice Social distancing So limit your handshakes and hugs, because if someone carrying the virus has virus particles on their hands, they can transfer that to Your hands by direct contact, So please, let’s show those appreciation gestures at a distance, A nice warm smile can go a long way.

It is critical that health and wellness is practiced at all costs, so protect your health and others by following these guidelines, Farmers and vendors, who are ill or showing signs of Illness should stay home. Incubation of this virus is up to 14 days, so it is quite possible. That you may have it spread it without, even knowing it Send a replacement to sell if you’re sick. If anyone within the farm business has been confirmed with COVID-19, notify the manager and remain home, Farmers should be readful.

Also of signs of ill customers, removing all products, They may have touched from their sales table. Do not remove them with your bare hands. It is important to postpone Those yummy samples, Like I mentioned, doing, This will reduce the risk of the virus particles transferring from one surface and person to another And lastly, as usual, no dogs Are allowed at the market? No dogs are allowed at the farmers market unless they are service.

Dogs, as defined as follows: Under the ADA, a service Dog is defined as a dog that will have that has Been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability, The task or tasks performed by the dog must be directly related. To the person’s disability, Emotional support dogs do not qualify. So to sum this up best Practices is the key to healthy food and healthy customers For more information on the farmers market operating guidelines during The COVID-19 outbreak you can visit the Farmers Market Authority At www.

Fma.Alabama.Gov or the Alabama Cooperative Extension System at http://www.Aces.Edu. Thank you.


 

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