COVID-19, Urban Farms, and Food Safety Resources
Many urban farms and community gardens who share the mission of providing fresh, healthy and affordable food to some of our most vulnerable community members are trying to decide whether and how their operations can stay open, as Shelter-in-Place orders mandate social distancing in many of our counties.
The good news is that many Shelter-in-Place Orders list farms, farm stands and farmers’ markets as “essential businesses” and are therefore exempt from the Shelter-in-Place orders.
However, there are some key guidelines from the CDC regarding social distancing, heightened health and hygiene practices and cleaning and disinfecting procedures that can help minimize exposure and risk of spreading of the virus. The other good news is that there is no evidence to
date of Coronavirus spreading through food and food packaging. The virus is thought to be spread mainly from person to person, however there is evidence that it can last for days on surfaces, thus the need to ramp up good health and hygiene practices, social distancing and cleaning and sanitizing of surfaces.
University of California research and extension faculty have compiled this list of fact sheets and resources for urban farmers, community gardens, and others involved in community-level food production to ensure that we can continue supplying fresh, healthy and affordable food to communities across our state.