Amid govt infighting, SA becomes one of the only countries to ban food deliveries

Business Insider SA
mr d food
  • South Africa is one of the only countries in the world to ban food deliveries during a lockdown.
  • This is despite the fact that prepared food deliveries may be a lower-risk, more hygienic option than shopping in grocery stores. 
  • Many companies now offer contact-less deliveries.
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With an estimated 20% of the world's population under some form of lockdown, only South African and New Zealand have banned prepared food deliveries during this time.

On Tuesday, the department of tourism confirmed that all food deliveries will be suspended during the lockdown.

This was confirmed by minister of police Bheki Cele at a briefing on Wednesday evening. Cele said that South Africans will only be allowed to buy groceries and prepare food at home.

Read: Uber Eats, Mr D Food and all restaurants to be closed during national lockdown

Business Insider SA has learned that the department of health has opposed attempts by other government officials to allow prepared food deliveries. The department, along with other officials, were approached for comment.

This is despite the fact that these deliveries are considered a hygienic way to sustain older and sick people, or those with underlying health conditions during the lockdown elsewhere in the world.

For high-risk persons, shopping for food in a grocery store poses an increased risk of contracting coronavirus – person-to-person contact is still the leading cause of transmission, as the coronavirus is three times more contagious as flu. You can also contract the coronavirus from touching an infected surface where an infected person has coughed or sneezed on.

There is currently no evidence that the coronavirus can be transmitted via food, according to the US Food and Drug Administration. The main risk of transmission is from close contact with infected people.

US states that are currently under lockdown (including California and New York) as well as countries like Canada, Brazil, India, UK, China, France and Germany have all allowed prepared-food deliveries have been allowed.

In South Africa, many of the large local food delivery companies have ramped up hygiene protocols and ensured contact-less deliveries between drivers and clients.

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