Is it completely safe to buy your morning brew at coffee shop?
In short, the answer is no. Without a vaccine, Rona (nickname for the novel coronavirus) isn’t going anywhere. Studies show we may be enduring this for another two years. Yikes, but does this mean we have to say farewell to our magical coffee routine.
Strolling through your eerily quiet neighborhood to visit your local coffee shop. Greeted by a familiar face, you smile because you’re order is ready without even uttering a word. What we love and appreciate about our routine is centered around this personal interaction. Your local barista knows who you are and you either stay to sit and chat for a bit. Or scramble in a hurry to work sipping on a cold fresh brew with a splash of oat milk. Tasting fresh notes of brown sugar and marmalade waiting for the caffeine magic to kick in. A ritual for more than a third of Americans polled in a Reuters survey. In light of our new normal, is it time to to give it up? Good news, the answer here is also no but you have some tweaks to make.
While there is no concrete evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19. There is that possibility where you can get Rona by touching a surface or object like a to go cup of jo. The virus can sit on the object and if the person proceeds to touch their mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes. However, the CDC notes because of poor survival of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from food products or packaging. It is more likely that a person will be exposed by person-to-person transmission involving close contact i.e less than 6-feet apart with someone who is ill or spreading the virus. Unfortunately the most risky part about your routine is your interaction with your favorite barista. Who you exchange money and take your java orders from.
Hence the importance to wear a mask to not only protect yourself but others too. Additionally to frequently wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (for reference it’s singing the Happy Birthday song twice. Take it a step further to disinfect surfaces like the coffee cup, although Lysol is hard to find these days.
If your local coffee shop is still open in your neighborhood, here are some suggestions to order safely;
- Opt for mobile ordering, to limit contact with other people.
- Use hand sanitizer after exchanging money and your cup. Wash your hands when you get home.
- If possible, pour the to-go coffee out of the takeout container and into a clean mug from your own kitchen.
Coronavirus or not, one fact remains constant, New York remains the city that never sleeps. For many of us our coffee routine provides some sense of normalcy and comfort in our social distancing days. The great relationships you create with local coffee roasters and baristas. That special knowing that they know how to brew it just right and on top of that, they somehow remember your order. We refuse to give up our daily cup of jo and all the bright feelings that come with it.
Not to mention the support we provide during this difficult time for the service industry, as we continue our routine.
Go ahead order your caffeine fix, just wear a mask while doing it.