Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Forbidden Fruit No More: Salad Bars Return to Local Markets, In Yet Another Sign the Pandemic is Ending

No longer forbidden: Self-service food areas, such as salsa bars, salad bars or buffet-style, including food sampling.

As suddenly as they disappeared 16 months ago, salad bars and hot food bars have returned to local markets this month.

According to one source at a market, who asked not to be named, LA County Public Health has removed protocols that forbade salad bars and hot food bars during the Coronavirus pandemic.

At, there are a list of "Retired Protocols – Not in Effect." It does in fact say that "these following protocols and guidance documents are no longer in effect and are for historical purposes only:

❑ Areas where customers may congregate or touch food or food ware items that other customers may use have been closed.... This includes but is not limited to:

o Self-service areas with condiment caddies, utensil caddies, napkins, lids, straws, to-go containers, etc.

o Self-service food areas, such as salsa bars, salad bars or buffet-style, including food sampling."

This from Gelson's, a premium market that has upscale, expensive locations in Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades and elsewhere:

"After more than a year and as California reopens, Gelson's is bringing back their beloved bars. Self-service soup, salad and poke bars are now open in all locations and hot bars are available in select locations across Southern California.

Customers can once again choose from an array of seasonal produce to create their own scrumptious salads, savor delicious soups and enjoy fresh, flavorful poke.

Healthy choices have never been tastier. The salad bar has always been a highlight for Gelson's customers, so the store is thrilled to be offering it once again during this post-Covid transition."


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