As your Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services, your safety is my greatest concern. With new cases of the coronavirus COVID-19 announced daily in Florida, my department is working to reduce the risk of its spread by making sure places that millions of Floridians visit daily — like grocery stores, convenience stores, and gas stations — are following best sanitation and food safety practices.
Our department is working with businesses to ensure that they are sanitizing shopping carts and basket handles, offering sanitizing supplies to customers, and that food stores are following food safety guidelines.
Everything counts when it comes to limiting the spread of viruses.
Studies have shown that human coronaviruses can live on surfaces like plastic, glass, or metal for up to nine days. Here are some things you can do as consumers to protect yourselves and others.
• Wipe down surfaces with disinfecting wipes at the gas pump, in the gym, at the coffee shop, or any public place. Don’t reuse the wipe.
• Apply hand sanitizer to your hands after pumping gas or wash hands for at least 20 seconds or more with soap. Wash your hands often — before preparing food, after coughing or touching a pet — for at least 20 seconds with soap. Use disposable products to dry your hands or wash reusable cloths at 140 degrees Fahrenheit after each use.
• Wash your hands even when wearing gloves. Germs can spread to hands when removing gloves.
• Disinfect and dry commonly-used surfaces like countertops and cutting boards, because dampness can help viruses survive and thrive.
If you have questions about the public health impacts of COVID-19, please call the Florida Department of Health’s 24/7 COVID-19 Call Center at 1 866 779 6121 or email [email protected].
We’re continuing to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely, and being proactive in protecting consumers and businesses.
FL Ag Commissioner