Coronavirus Preparedness, Stockpiling, Non-perishable food
Update: March 20th 2020
At this moment (13:00 March 20th) we've heard that shipping outside of Europe is not possible (by BPost - but also all other package shipping companies). If you place an order now, it will be put on hold and will automatically ship when it becomes possible to ship again.
We are closely monitoring the situation and will keep you updated here and via email if the information affects your destination.
Now might be the right time to have a few non-perishable foods in stock. But don't let the global panic around the coronavirus (COVID-19) make you do irrational things. In this blog we give some advice specifically for the coronavirus and more generally about stockpiling food.
The coronavirus is significantly worse than the flu, but not the zombie apocalypse (or avian flu). There is no need to panic, but it probably makes sense to prepare. It's going to affect day-to-day-life in western countries (where you probably are, but of course everywhere around the world). You personally will most probably only feel midly ill, but this may be a big factor in spreading the disease (so take some of the precautions listed below).
What is smart to do, right now!
The information below is based on the advice of someone who works on biosecurity and has gotten extensive feedback on these tips. See the original document and discussion here.
- Stock at least 1 month of nonperishable food, food for your pet(s), and other necessities (including prescription medications if they are essential)
- Work from home if possible (especially if there are already cases in your geographic area) Update: this is now advice in many countries!
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, with soap! (20 seconds is longer than you think!)
- Don't touch your face (you do this unconsciously many times during the day)
- Use hand sanitizer, especially when eating
- Wipe down commonly used items (e.g. laptop, phone, doorknobs) with disinfectant regularly (and make sure to do this at the office if you're still there)
- Avoid all unnecessary travel. But if you have to travel (to an affected area, use a N95 respirator - and men, shave your facial hair)
- Avoid crowded places without protection (go Netflix!)
- Stay calm! Stress, car accidents, the common flu, and many other things are way more deadly at this moment!
What should I do long-term (preparedness)?
- Have a rolling stock of non-perishable food. Be it beans and rice or a complete meal like Queal, always refresh your stock (eat the stuff with the shortest BBD) every 3 months
- Know where to get reliable information. This could be your government website, but is probably not the evening news (panic sells!). In The Netherlands this is the RIVM. In the UK this is the NHS. In the US this is the CDC
- Practice good hygiene. See the above point about washing hands, this also protects you (in part) from the common flu
- Know who to call (if you might need help), or who would depend on you
- Have some cash on hand. Banks should keep working, but it can never hurt to have €/$100 in case of emergencies
- Have an emergency kit at home and at work
- Enjoy life. Just as mentioned above, being prepared doesn't equate being scared or hesitant to go out the door. Being prepared means that you've taken some steps to possibly feel even more secure
What about Queal?
We hope that the above tips have been useful and that you may not have to depend on them too much in the future. But if you do, we think that Queal can be a very good solution for your food stock.
Queal has a BBD (best before date) of 12 months from production. It's a complete meal so it means that you can replace a breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner with it. It's also quite tasty (although we're biased of course), and has more than 8 flavours!
Lastly, Queal isn't only awesome shakes (for which we're well-known), but we also sell bars and complete oat meal. So there will be enough variety, pandemic or not.
We hope this article has made it clear what you should do in case of the coronavirus or another virus outbreak and some good tips on what to do to prepare. Please don't let this be a substitute for finding information from your government and healthworkers. And do stay positive, even if it's at home for a few days.