As the local economy slowly eases its way into the so-called ‘new normal’, the restaurant business in Tacurong City is another essential sector that needs to adopt health and safety protocols required in its operations.

Seventy-four owners and operators of the food industry based in Tacurong City attended today the orientation on the guidelines governing the operation of restaurants under the new normal set by the Department of Tourism as stated in Memorandum Circular 2020-004.

Under Modified General Community Quarantine, restaurants are allowed to operate but should only accommodate customers based on their 50 per cent area capacity.

Tourism Operations Officer Emelie Jamorabon discussed the salient provisions of the Memo Circular under thecnew normal, which includes changes in the configuration or physical set-up of restaurants such as tables and chairs arrangement, putting up of signage on hygiene protocol, and the number of customers allowed to enter at a time.

The government defines new normal as ‘emerging behaviors, situation, and minimum public health standards that will be institutionalized in routine practices and remain even after pandemic while the disease is not totally eradicated through means such as widespread immunization’.

Discussed also the the orientation were the hygiene protocols for employees such as: wearing of food safety apparel, frequent handwashing, non-contact with ready-to-eat foods with bare hands, and observance of physical distancing.

On the other hand, aside from handwashing and temperature check at the entrance, customers need to step on the foot bath, observe physical distancing at all time, and wear face masks when entering establishments.

Customers are also required to fill out Health Declaration Forms that will be used for contact tracing.

Meanwhile, Task Force Social Distancing member Roger Cerbo informed the attendees that the task force will be strict in implementing the guidelines.

“Just like what we are doing with non-food establishments, we will see to it that restaurants and other food establishments also comply with the health protocols”, he said. (ASF, LGU Information)