Iowa’s restaurant industry is home to 6,285 eating and drinking locations. The restaurant industry is open and the tables at America’s 1+ million restaurant and foodservice locations are always a great place to gather with friends and family. To ensure that restaurants have the latest information about coronavirus, the National Restaurant Association created this industry-specific guidance for owners and operators. The industry works day in and day out at food safety. You can find out more about ongoing ServSafe training and certification programs here. The National Restaurant Association continues to engage with local, state, and federal officials to help our employers and employees address this public health emergency. Updated March 5, 2020 What is 2019-nCoV Coronavirus? 2019-nCoV (Coronavirus) is virus that causes the COVID-19 respiratory illness. It was first detected in Wuhan, China. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it’s unclear how easily or sustainably this virus is spreading between people. Typically, respiratory viruses are most contagious when an individual is most symptomatic, but there have been reports of the virus spreading when the affected individual does not show any symptoms. How are restaurants responding? The foodservice industry follows strict local public health guidelines. To meet these guidelines, restaurants have safety protocols and best practices in place, including guidance from ServSafe. Owners and operators should contact their local health departments for the latest advisories/information about coronavirus in their community. The National Restaurant Association also has a fact sheet in English and Spanish with information specific to the industry. What can we all do? The CDC suggests that people take the same steps they would to keep from getting the flu: get a flu vaccine, take everyday preventative actions – like washing your hands often – and see a doctor when you are sick. The World Health Organization (WHO) also has a preliminary guidance on getting a workplace ready for COVID-19. What is the impact to the supply chain? It is still unknown if or how the coronavirus will impact the foodservice supply chain. Many organizations and researchers are monitoring developments. Where can we find resources? To ensure that the foodservice industry can easily access the latest resources from the best sources, we will continue to update this page as new information develops and comes in from the National Restaurant Association and other various sources.