Touching Vegetables May Spread Covid-19, Marketgoers Advised To Sanitise Hands Regularly

Marketgoers Should Sanitise Hands Regularly As Touching Vegetables May Spread Covid-19

As the number of Covid-19 clusters continues to pop up around Singapore, health authorities studied some of them to find out how cases spread.

Seniors are particularly vulnerable to Covid-19, so when a cluster saw many cases of senior citizens, the NCID did a study.

The Straits Times (ST) reported the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID) study on the market cluster in June revealed touching fruits and vegetables with bare hands may spread Covid-19.

Covid-19 may spread through touching fruits & vegetables

In June this year, Singapore saw a cluster that originated from Bukit Merah View Market and Hawker Centre, with 94 cases in total.


In response to ST’s queries, NCID’s executive director, Professor Leo Yee Sin explained that they investigated the situation because many seniors had been affected by it.

NCID’s study on the cluster found out what the cases had in common:

  • unvaccinated
  • did not wear masks properly
  • often touched fruits and vegetables with bare hands


Sanitise hands before and after touching produce

The director of the National Public Health and Epidemiology Unit, Adjunct Associate Professor Matthias Toh, proposed for stallholders to pre-package their products.

Additionally, he advised marketgoers to sanitise their hands before and after touching the fruits and vegetables.


Non-surgical, reusable masks should also be washed regularly as a precaution, Prof Toh said.

These regulations are also applicable to supermarkets or anywhere else where people can pick their own fresh produce, he noted.

As long as other people are able to pick and choose their fresh produce, there is always the possibility of the item being the source of transmission.

Hence, all members of the public should be alert at all times.

Take safety precautions when touching fresh produce

With this new piece of information, it is crucial for all members of the public to take necessary precautions when touching fruits and vegetables.

Contact does not have to be direct to spread Covid-19 in this case.

Let us play our part in being responsible citizens and fight against Covid-19.

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