Market stall-holders and customers in Wollongong are preparing to adapt to a new set of safety measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Stalls are going to have hand sanitizer, we're going to have social distancing signs around," Kirrily Sinclair, owner/operator of Foragers Markets said.
"There will be security there to support social distancing."
South-west Sydney-based stall-holder Sudha Diwakar sells traditional south Indian crackers at a series of markers, including Foragers' Wollongong and Bulli events.
She said the past couple of months had been "very challenging" for stall-holders, with most markets temporarily closed, so was pleased that some such as Wollongong were returning.
Mrs Diwakar said there will also be changes to the way they operate upon the stall's return to Wollongong on Friday.
"We're not allowed to open sample any food products," she said. "Everything has to be pre-packed and sold as is.
"I usually open packets for samples and follow the food safety measures by using tongs and gloves, but right now with the COVID, you're not allowed to sample any food at all in the open markets."
Mrs Sinclair is owner/operator of Foragers Markets, who operate the Eat Street markets (each Thursday in the Crown Street Mall); Friday Forage (each Friday in the Crown Street Mall); and the Foragers Market at Bulli Showground (second Sunday of every month).
The markets shut up shop temporarily in March.
"I could have continued to run throughout as we're seen as an essential service, but I just felt the bigger picture is we all are going to suffer a bit, but we have to play our part... And come back when it's safe," she said.
"A lot of markets in Sydney re-opened a month ago, but as much as I would have liked the income to come back, I wasn't quite ready."
Mrs Sinclair said the Friday Crown Street Mall market would return from this week, with an announcement regarding the Eat Street markets to be made in the coming weeks.
"We want to start back with Friday, get our feet on the ground and see how everything's going to work with social distancing," she said.
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"We're not looking at bringing the Bulli market back yet... That's still on hold for now."
Mrs Sinclair said some of their older stall-holders, or those with health issues, weren't going to return to the Friday market for now.
"But for the most part, this is people's livelihoods, and it's all been put on hold, so they're really keen to come back in a safe way," she said.
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