Being in social isolation has meant that many ways of life have changed. These can be scary times, and now a trip to the grocery store means a whole new way of shopping.
Stick to Essentials
If you go to a store, stick to buying essentials (like groceries). Other things can wait or be ordered online.
Curbside / To-Go Shop When You Can
Right now, it seems like a lot of To-Go services are overloaded, hard to find availability, or completely unavailable. However, when you can, skip in the in-store shopping and go with curbside services. You can order at some places, and when you arrive, you pop open your trunk, an employee loads your vehicle, and you are done.
Be prepared for your outing with appropriate protection.
For us, this means a mask and gloves, hand sanitizer. Also, wearing clothes to the store that we change out of when we get home.
Bring extra latex gloves, hand wipes, hand sanitizer, sanitizing spray – anything else you need to feel protected.
Reusable or Disposable Bags?
Many, or most stores, have gone back to using disposable bags.
However, if there is an instance where you are using reusable bags, try to use ones that you can wash. We have nylon shopping bags that I throw into the wash as soon as we get home. I have some really cute Ulster Weavers bags and Chico Bags, and I love that they are washable (Coronavirus or not).
Organize your grocery list
Organize your list by the layout of the store, so that you can be quick and efficient.
For example, start with the produce department, and work your way through the categories, ending with the dairy and frozen foods.
This way, you can minimize your time in the store, minimizing exposure.
Have a way to decontaminate, set up ahead of time
For us, we have a system for when my husband gets home.
Shoes are left outside.
We place everything in the garage. Then, everything gets sorted and sanitized as needed.
Things like cans and boxes, and other shelf stable foods, go into plastic bins. They stay in the bins, and if we want to use them shortly after purchasing, we disinfect them. If it is a weeks before we use them, depending on how long those items have been in “quarantine”, then we don’t need to.
Items that go in the fridge have to be sanitized, so we wipe the containers down. Things like produce (apples, other fruits or veggies) get set aside so they can be properly washed before use.
We wash up, and clothes are washed as needed.
There are lots of great videos out there with recommendations of how to clean your groceries, like this one.