Shanghai’s market authorities issued a slew of preferential policies yesterday, such as extending the validity period of operation licenses, to help local food-related businesses quickly resume operations.

For businesses whose food operation licenses, wine product retail permits and wholesale permits expire after March 28 and have been unable to have extension procedures handled due to COVID-19, their permits will be extended until June 30, the Shanghai Administration for Market Regulation said.

Food businesses are exempt from submitting paper materials, because they can apply for extensions online.

On-the-spot examinations will be suspended for the applications of newly set up catering businesses, including restaurants, milk tea stores, coffee shops and dessert shops, if they don’t involve food with potential high risks such as cold and raw food and freshly squeezed beverages. However, their food processing areas must be smaller than 20 square meters.

Districts’ market regulators will issue permits after reviewing application materials.

Authorities have also stepped up guidance for food businesses to clear inventories of stale or expired food. They have also been ordered to strictly implement food material review mechanisms during procurement and keep relevant records to ensure the sources of food ingredients can be tracked.

Moreover, these businesses must abide by pandemic prevention and control requirements and ensure disinfection and health management of staff.

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