Press conference on COVID-19 prevention and regulation measures for farmers markets

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on July 3 to brief the media on COVID-19 prevention and regulation measures for farmers markets. July 7, 2020

Xinhua News Agency:

We have noticed that this wave of COVID-19 in Beijing and the previous wave originating in Wuhan were both closely related to farmers markets. During the epidemic prevention and control, what are the key aspects to which we should pay close attention in such places? And what are the implications for other regions? Thank you.

He Qinghua:

Thanks for your questions. For farmers markets, we should pay attention to three aspects: environment, goods on display and people in the market.

In regard to the environment, first, we should strengthen daily management. The health of staff working in the market should be closely monitored. This kind of farmers markets, such as the one at Xinfadi, contain a huge number of goods, requiring us manage them on the basis of their different categories and ensure they are kept in a clean and sanitary environment. Second, we should improve the overall environmental sanitation facilities within a market, including indoor air circulation, rational use of air conditioners, proper use of toilets, garbage collection, water supply and drainage, vector control and hand washing facilities. Third, we should arrange for specially assigned personnel to work in the public areas of a market, including handling environmental sanitation, goods transportation, and disinfection and cleaning. In particular, they should regularly clean and disinfect all the public facilities, especially those to be used frequently, including the surface of door handles, elevator buttons, handrails and scales. Fourth, operators in the market should keep their sales areas clean and sanitary, including chopping boards, knives and work clothes. It's very important for every operator to do a good job in the environmental sanitation work of their own assigned area. These are the four points covering environmental sanitation.

In regard to the goods, we should establish a traceability system for products. Market initiators and operators should implement the purchase inspection and traceability management regulations required by relevant authorities, and not purchase any kinds of products from sources outside those legally permitted. People in the market, including both staff and customers, should abide by relevant personal protection measures, including wearing masks and gloves, keeping their hands clean, and maintaining safe social distancing of more than one meter. I believe that carrying out all these requirements could effectively prevent the recurrence of the epidemic in farmers markets. Thank you.

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