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Coffee chains ramp up contactless pickup services in China to reduce contagion risks

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MILAN – In order to minimize the risks of contagion and keep their worker safe, McDonald’s, Starbucks and other fast food and coffee chains are boosting “contactless” pickup and delivery services in China.

McDonald’s customers can order remotely – on mobile phones or by computers in store – and employees seal the meals in bags and put them in a special spot for pickup without human contact, McDonald’s reports on its website.

For delivery orders, drivers drop McDonald’s packages at building entrances, disinfect their delivery bags and wash their hands more frequently. Drivers carry ID cards showing that they – and the people who made and packaged their food – had their body temperature scanned to prove they do not have a fever.

“While we look at how to further improve the process, the stepped-up preventive measures apply to all of our servicing channels,” McDonald’s said in a statement to Reuters.

Starbucks invites customers order coffee contactless via its app and then wait outside its cafés until they get a pick-up notice. Orders are made available on tables just inside café entrances.

If they do enter Starbucks locations, customers have their temperature taken at the door, as fever is one of the main symptoms of infection, and baristas wear masks.

For delivery, Starbucks said it regularly sterilizes containers and that its delivery people have their temperature taken daily. Indoors staff must wash hands every 30 minutes, and public areas are sterilized every 2 hours.