Our COVID-19 Preventative Measures
The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory disease which enters through the nose and mouth. The COVID-19 is spread via droplets from coughing, sneezing, touching contaminated objects or shaking hands.
As a business, The GoodGrocer recognises its role in preventing the spread and impact of the COVID-19 virus to its customers and the public in general. We have therefore created a COVID-19 Prevention Guideline that all employees of The GoodGrocer are stringently required to follow.
Our COVID-19 Guideline was developed based on traditional infection prevention, occupational hygiene practices, guidance from the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), the World Health Organization (WHO), the South African Department of Health (DoH) and from protocols set out by the Disaster Management Act Regulations 2020 regulating e-Commerce sales.
When do we apply the procedures set out by our guideline?
- When purchasing inventory (in wholesale retail/grocery stores).
- When storing inventory.
- When packing orders for customers to receive.
- When delivering orders to customers.
- When receiving/taking back unsatisfactory or incorrect items from the customer.
- When dealing with the general public.
How we are going to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
The GoodGrocer is taking this pandemic seriously and we are taking every precaution possible when conducting our daily operations. To reduce the impact of COVID-19 outbreak on businesses, workers, customers, and the general public, we will operate in a worst case scenario where we assume every person or space we come in contact with has been contaminated with COVID-19; even though it is most likely not true.
We will try to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by ensuring that we never forget the seriousness of the situation and that our guidelines are strictly adhered to by all employees.
What are our COVID-19 protocols?
We know that a lot of anxiety exists during this unprecedented time and we want to reassure you of our prevention methods. We have created six (6) key measures to make sure we protect as many people as possible. They are:
1. Hand Washing
Washing your hands with soap and warm water or using alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be there.
Proper hand washing techniques:
- When washing hands, friction is necessary to remove transient microbes from the hands.
- Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds followed by drying.
Here is how to properly wash your hands.
Hand washing is to occur in the following instances:
- Before and after departing to purchase inventory or deliver orders.
- When returning from purchasing inventory or delivering orders.
- Before and after packing inventory onto shelves and then into individual orders.
2. Hand Sanitizing
The best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 virus is hand washing. However, when soap and water isn’t available, sanitizers have proven to be effective in reducing the number and type of microbes that can spread the virus.
Hand sanitization is to be used in the following instances:
The general rule would be to use hand sanitizers before and after touching a surface other people have touched. Such as:
- Before touching any carts or baskets,
- Before and after visiting stores,
- After using an ATM or card machine,
- In between delivery of each order,
- After unavoidable contact with other people (e.g. giving/receiving change or receiving tips).
Proper use of sanitizers:
- Alcohol based sanitiser (with at least 70% alcohol) is to be used.
- Only sanitizers provided by The GoodGrocer is to be used at all times to ensure efficacy.
- Just like when washing with soap and water, make sure hands are covered fully, rubbing it in for at least 20 seconds so it’s truly effective.
- Take care not to wipe sanitizer solution off before it’s dry.
- Use of hand sanitizer frequently can make hands dry. If that happens, make sure hands are dry before applying lotion.
3. Face Masks
Face masks are made of several layers of paper and protect against splashes and droplets.
Face masks are to be used in the following instances:
- At all times whilst purchasing inventory.
- During interactions with customers, whilst delivering or in general public spaces.
Proper mask wearing etiquette:
- Masks need to cover both the nose and mouth at all times!
- If you wish to remove your mask:
- Disinfect your hands before removing,
- Remove the strings around your ears without touching the outside part of the mask,
- Disinfect your hands again to put on a new, clean face mask.
- Masks should always be put on and taken off with clean hands in order to prevent cross-contamination.
- If masks are touched by unwashed hands, get wet, are soiled, or are removed from the face, they will become contaminated and will no longer provide effective protection. They should then be discarded.
- Masks that have not been contaminated in any way can be worn for up to 8 hours.
- Wash home-made masks with soap and water daily.
4. Social Distancing
The term “social distancing” means keeping a safe physical space between yourself and other people who are not from your own household. This is done to curb spread via an infected person passing droplets through sneezing or coughing.
Social distancing will occur in the following instances:
- When delivering, orders will be left at the customers’ door before knocking. Thereafter the driver must step back in anticipation of the customer opening the door.
- When standing in queues or gathered with more than one person.
- When purchasing for orders, it should be done when fewer people are likely to be shopping i.e. early morning.
Proper distancing etiquette:
- Interact with people from a distance of at least 2 meters.
- All physical contact should be avoided at all costs.
- Avoid hugs and handshakes.
- If people/customers do not adhere to social distancing by trying to get closer than 2M, don’t hesitate to distance yourself from them or to ask politely to respect social distances.
- Avoid large crowds and gatherings.
5. Disinfections & Sanitization
Evidence suggests that the COVID-19 virus may remain viable for hours on surfaces made from a variety of materials. Therefore, cleaning of visibly dirty surfaces followed by disinfection of frequently touched equipment and surfaces is a best practice measure to prevent transference from surfaces to the hands, eyes, nose or mouth.
To disinfect surfaces, wear reusable gloves then use sanitizer wipes, solutions (such as disinfectant) or clean cloths and disinfectant spray solution.
Regular disinfections is to occur in the following instances:
- Before touching any shopping carts or baskets whilst purchasing with wipes,
- Wiping door handles before entering the delivery vehicle followed by the steering wheel, gear handle and other frequently touched instruments within the delivery vehicle.
- Wipe all workplaces (such as tables and shelves) where purchased inventory will sit with disinfectant before and after placing inventory on it.
- Use wipes to open:
- fridge and freezers,
- other handles regularly used.
- Disinfect all nonporous containers before placing them on a shelf, fridge or freezer.
- When using an ATM, clean the keyboard with disinfecting wipes.
- Use wipes and sprays to disinfect electronics such as cell phones, tablets, touch screens, remote controls, and keyboards after every use.
6. Contactless Delivery
The GoodGrocer offers our customers electronic Proof of Delivery (e-POD) after a delivery is made for good record keeping. Due to the COVID-19 virus, we now allow our customers to sign for their e-PoD from their own phone. This allows us to socially distance properly and prevents the need for customers to handle outside equipment.
How contactless deliveries work:
- Customer will receive an email with a link therein to sign for their order.
- Driver will place an order at a customer’s door and step back.
- If the customer is satisfied with their order, they will either:
- sign for it from their own device or
- allow the driver to take photo evidence of the delivery.
- The driver will verify the signature, submits the e-POD then departs.
- The customer will then receive proof of the delivery without a single need for contact.
Our Other General Protocols
In general, our employees will be reminded that the most consistent way of preventing the spread of COVID-19 is to wash their hands regularly and avoid touching their face as much as possible.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a flexed elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the bin.
- After every shift, employees are to take a shower, wash their hair (for those who have it) with shampoo and make sure the face is washed thoroughly with soap and water.
- Employees may not share face masks, equipment, stationery, utensils or similar items.
- Each employee’s temperatures will be tested and noted at the start of a shift and every three (3) hours thereafter.
- Employee temperature must not be above 37.5 °
Where can I find more information about covid-19?
If you would like to learn more about the COVID-19, please peruse the following institutions:
National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD)
World Health Organization (WHO)
South African Department of Health (DoH)
SA Coronavirus Contact (General)