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Trader Joe's Is Ending Its Mask Requirement For These Customers

It's likely the first grocery store chain to update its policies after new CDC recommendations were released.
trader joes cashier in face mask

Last week Trader Joe's announced the end of Senior Shopping Hours at many of its stores, and today the company just got rid of another rule: its mask requirement. The updated policy says that fully vaccinated customers don't have to wear one when they shop, according to the store's COVID-19 webpage.

"We encourage customers to follow the guidance of health officials, including, as appropriate, CDC guidelines that advise customers who are fully vaccinated are not required to wear masks while shopping," the site says. However, it makes no mention of whether or not Trader Joe's will verify customers' vaccination status should they walk in without a mask on.

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The low-cost chain is likely the first grocery store to drop the rule after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced new safety suggestions for those who have received all the doses of the Moderna, Pfizer, or Johnson & Johnson vaccinations, according to USA Today.

While unvaccinated individuals still need to wear masks for things like dining outdoors with friends from multiple households, attending outdoor events, and indoor gatherings. Those who are fully vaccinated are safe not wearing a mask for all those same activities, and more, according to a CDC chart. To see the full chart, go to the CDC's website.

Other retailers are not following in Trader Joe's footsteps, USA Today says. Walmart, Target, Walgreens, and more will still require all customers to mask up as they shop. These places and more also chose to keep the rules in place when some governors ended statewide mask mandates in March.

If shopping without a mask makes you uneasy, here are the 11 best tips for safe grocery shopping during the pandemic. And to get all the latest grocery store news delivered right to your email inbox every day, sign up for our newsletter!

Amanda McDonald
Amanda is a staff writer for Eat This, Not That!. Read more