Boris issues supermarket warning that Covid can be passed on by touching infected goods

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BORIS Johnson has urged shoppers not to touch items in supermarkets unless they’re buying them to help stop the spread of coronavirus.

The Prime Minister made the warning in a press conference tonight as he said the disease can be spread through handled goods.

Supermarket shoppers are being asked not to touch items they don’t want

It is the first time Mr Johnson has warned against handling goods in stores.

Shoppers are already asked to stand at least one metre apart to help stop the spread of coronavirus, while stores are also limiting the number of people allowed inside at one time.

Speaking this evening, Mr Johnson said: “This disease can be passed on not just by standing too near to someone in a supermarket queue, but also by handling something touched by an infected person.

“And remember one in three have no symptoms. Washing your hands now is as important as it has ever been.”

It came as: 

  • 55,761 new covid-19 cases and 1,280 further deaths were reported in the latest 24-hour period
  • But the ‘R rate’ is below 1 in some regions in signs the lockdown is working
  • Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said earlier that people should hesitate book their summer holidays as the nation was still in the middle of a pandemic
  • The number of people in the UK to have been given a first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine is 3,234,946 as of January 14, according to Government data published on Friday – a rise of 316,694 in just a day
  • Professor Chris Whitty said deaths would keep rising for at least a week – and we haven’t reached the peak yet
Boris Johnson speaking during the press conference today

Asda has previously introduced “no touch” rules where customers are asked not to pick up items they’re not buying.

In a message on its website, Asda tells shoppers to “TOUCH LESS” and to “pick up only what you intend to buy”.

Aldi, meanwhile, asked customers to only touch trolleys that they intend to use in an update last year.

We’ve asked rival supermarkets – including Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Lidl, Morrisons, Waitrose and M&S – if they have any rules against touching products in place and we’ll be updating this story.

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