COVID-19 Service Updates

For the most up to date information related to COVID-19, please reference the following resources:

For the most up to date information related to COVID-19, please reference the following resources:

GO Box Service Status

On March 8, Gov. Kate Brown declared a state of emergency to address the spread of COVID-19 in Oregon. An Executive Order issued March 23 directs Oregonians to stay home except for essential needs. Although some counties in Oregon have begun a phased reopening, Multnomah County, where Portland is located, remains under stay at home measures. 

While restaurants have been allowed to operate for takeout only, many of our food vendors are currently closed. GO Box reusables and drop site locations continue to be accessible at our food vendor partners who are open. Please note that New Seasons Market has temporarily paused borrowing and returning reusables at their locations, but we will be back when they reopen their prepared foods counter. GO Box never charges fees for reusables borrowed for extended periods of time, so please don’t worry about returning reusables if your usual drop site is inaccessible for the time being. 

At GO Box, we have always taken our responsibility to provide a safe & sanitary reusable packaging service very seriously. With our current precautions, we are very confident that the GO Box system can continue to provide a safe alternative to single-use packaging. The Oregon Department of Agriculture and the Multnomah Health Authority have vetted our standard safety operating procedures. We are also taking the following precautions to ensure we are in line with science based Health recommendations:

  • Employees will wear clean, reusable cloth masks during their delivery & pick up routes & will maintain a six-foot physical distance from others. 
  • The GO Box delivery bicycles and trailers will be thoroughly cleaned with 60+% ethanol or isopropyl alcohol solution before and after every route. 
  • We have added an additional sanitation step at the beginning of our washing process in order to keep our employees safe while washing reusables. 

Is Reuse Safe in a World with COVID-19?

Yes. Reusables are safe, even in the age of COVID-19, as long as proper sanitation procedures are upheld. Reusable, durable products – such as plates and silverware for restaurant dining – have been safely used for years despite the existence of transferable diseases. We recommend this excellent Fact Sheet released by Upstream Solutions discussing the safety of reuse during the pandemic.

There is a theoretical risk of COVID-19 contact transfer from surfaces of reusables (or any other surface), but recent scientific studies show that risk is very low. CDC spokesman Benjamin Haynes shared the following with NPR: “COVID-19 spreads mainly through close contact from person-to-person. While it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.”

The plastics industry has attempted to leverage the pandemic crisis to assert that single-use disposables are the most sanitary option, with no supporting scientific studies. In fact, single-use disposable packaging does not undergo a commercial sanitation process during its production. So, we counter that our reusables, which are washed in a high heat commercial warewashing machine, are quite possibly safer than disposables. 

We do not yet fully understand coronavirus & COVID-19, so it’s important to stay diligent & up to date with peer-reviewed scientific studies & health guidelines as they are released. We will continue to update our operations & this page as new information becomes available so we can continue to provide a safe reuse service to our partner vendors & subscribers.