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FEHD reminds food business operators and food handlers to continue adopting anti-epidemic precautionary measures
     In the light of a recent local confirmed case of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) being a food handler, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) today (July 6) reminded the food business operators and food handlers should comply with the directions under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Requirements and Directions) (Business and Premises) Regulation (Cap. 599F) (the Regulation) by adopting measures to observe social distancing and to pay attention on personal, food and environmental hygiene, so as to reduce the risk of spreading diseases.

     The directions in relation to catering business premises issued under the Regulation by the Secretary for Food and Health are still in force. The directions currently in force include the following requirements: tables must be arranged in a way to ensure there is a distance of at least 1.5 m or some form of partition which could serve as effective buffer between one table and another table; a person must wear a mask except when eating/drinking; body temperature screening must be conducted before the person is allowed to enter the catering premises; and hand sanitisers must be provided for any person at the premises, etc.

     A spokesman for the FEHD said, "To minimise the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in food premises, the food business operators and food handlers should comply with relevant regulations on prevention and control of disease and to take further appropriate measures in maintaining high standards of hygiene and cleanliness as well as paying attention to personal, food and environmental hygiene."

     The FEHD reiterates again the recommendations made to food business operators and food handlers in writing on May 6, 2020, including adopting the following measures:
(1) Food handlers should suspend from engaging in any food handling work when suffering or suspected to be suffering from an infectious disease or symptoms of illness such as flu, diarrhoea, vomiting, jaundice, fever, sore throat and abdominal pain. Wear a surgical mask when having respiratory symptoms. Seek medical advice promptly;
(2) Food handlers should maintain good personal hygiene (e.g. washing hands before or after handling food, after clean-up is carried out, after handling refuse or other dirty items, and after visiting the toilet);
(3) Food handlers should wash hands with liquid soap and water, and rub for at least 20 seconds. Then rinse with water and dry with a disposable paper towel or hand dryer. The cleaned hands should not touch the water tap directly again (for example: using a paper towel to wrap the faucet before turn it off); and
(4) Trays, in particular the rim of trays, must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected every time after used by customers. If tray lining is used, it shall also be replaced every time after use.

     For continuous upkeep of environmental hygiene, food business operators and food handlers must make concerted and persistent efforts to ensure cleanliness and hygiene of the premises and food safety. The FEHD will take stringent enforcement actions against offenders in defiance of legislation on environmental hygiene and food safety issues.
Ends/Monday, July 6, 2020
Issued at HKT 21:37
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