Cooked food sales: There might be a loophole to get past the ban
The ban on cooked food is, for lack of a better word, controversial. But those opposed to the government's odd behaviour are fighting back.
The DA may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but they are showing their mettle as the opposition during our “cooked food crisis”. With a legal challenge looming against the banned sales of pre-prepared food items, leading politicians have already started looking for loopholes. And we may have found one.
Cooked food ban may have a loophole
John Steenhuisen has been on Twitter, lambasting the decision as ‘petty’ and ‘a threat to goodwill’. However, he’s also arrowed in on the exact wording of the amendment made by the government on Monday. The National Disaster Act now states that “cooked hot food” is exempt from sale.
One particular word has proved to be “too hot to handle”…
“Now it depends what the definition of ‘hot’ is? is there a gazetted temperature range that differentiates between cool, warm and ‘hot’ ? could it apply to cold ‘hot curries’? when you start regulating in a petty way it eventually evaporates goodwill and generally ends badly…”DA leader John Steenhuisen
Another colleague of Steenhuisen’s who had fun with the awkward wording was Phumzile van Damme. The shadow communications minister has backed plans to sell “cold cooked food” instead, lampooning the law:
So one could sell cold cooked food, in terms of the wording here. https://t.co/YdrHSClodo— Phumzile Van Damme (@zilevandamme) April 20, 2020
What South Africans can no longer buy in supermarkets
The decision now puts South Africans who rely on the convenience of cooked food in an extremely difficult position. Truckers, hospital staff, key workers and the elderly rely on meals that can be prepared quickly. The blanket ban means the following items will not be available for purchase until at least next month:
- Rotisserie and pre-prepared chickens.
- Hot pies.
- Freshly-baked bread will be removed from shelves.
- The ban applies to anything you can get behind a hot food counter within a supermarket. Sausage rolls, cheese bites, and burgers-to-go also make the list.