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More Grocery Shoppers are Making These Dangerous Mistakes, Survey Finds

While we're more worried about COVID-19 than ever, personal precautionary measures are slipping.

Our worries about the coronavirus were at an all-time high—even before Americans heard the news of a mutated variant of the coronavirus that appears to be more contagious. Though we are more scared about the virus, these fears apparently don't translate into a willingness to take safety precautions more seriously.

Americans are the most worried about the coronavirus since the pandemic started, according to the results of a new survey from Dunnhumby. When compared to all other countries across the globe, the U.S. ranks as the sixth most worried nation. The data science group surveyed 42,000 global consumers in November about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their attitudes and behaviors, the results of which were compared to an earlier wave of responses from September. (Related: The One Vitamin Doctors Are Urging Everyone to Take Right Now.)

"Worry is back with a vengeance as consumers are being hit with multiple intersecting crises at a time typically spent gathering with family and friends," Grant Steadman, president of North America for Dunnhumby, said.

At the same time, fewer people in the U.S. are willing to take actions to combat the virus now versus in September, according to the survey. Whether you chalk this up to pandemic fatigue or a general sense of helplessness amid an all-time low level of faith in the government's ability to handle the pandemic, personal safety measures have started to slip among shoppers.

There was a decline in self-reports of regular mask-wearing and handwashing since September. One reason this is particularly alarming is that mask-wearing is one of the best ways to protect yourself and others in enclosed spaces like grocery stores.

Not all news from the survey was cause for concern, however. Shoppers have increased the practice of social distancing, according to the result. Nearly 70% of those polled try to stay six feet away from others in public arenas such as supermarkets. Consumers are also going to the grocery store less frequently than they did back in April, with online shopping accounting for nearly one-third of all weekly visits.

To stay as safe as possible on your in-store shopping trips, make sure to follow these 10 Grocery Store Safety Tips From a Health Expert. And don't forget to sign up for our newsletter to get the latest grocery news delivered straight to your inbox.

Mura Dominko
Mura is a Deputy Editor leading ETNT's coverage of America's favorite fast foods and restaurant chains. Read more