Four major events at Orange FOOD Week have been cancelled following coronavirus concerns and government advice to avoid gatherings of more than 500 people.
The night market on March 27, Forage on April 4, the Autumn Grazing Dinner in Blayney on March 30 and the Sunday Producer's Market and Brunch on April 5 will be cancelled.
Information regarding refund procedures for ticket purchasers and stallholders will be advised next week, while smaller events will go ahead, but organisers are urging those feeling sick or unwell to steer clear of events.
A statement released by the FOOD Week organisers early on Friday said while the numbers of cases remain low, the committee wouldn't cancel any events but in the wake of government advice around lunchtime on Friday an update was sent out cancelling major events.
FOOD Week begins on March 27 and runs for two weeks all across the Orange district, with the marquee opening event normally the night market.
"As many of the FOOD Week satellite events capacity remains under 500 persons, we would like to still encourage people to continue with arrangements to attend and visit the Orange region," a FOOD Week Festival spokesperson said in an update on Friday afternoon.
Earlier in the day, a spokesperson said the committee would be implementing a range of measures for the preparation, planning and response to this issue and "continue to closely monitor the situation".
The committee said it was "everyone's responsibility" to ensure the event is healthy and safe, and requested people who are unwell to not attend events and ensure thorough washing of hands, covering mouths while sneezing and coughing and bringing along hand sanitiser.
The statement also suggested people see a doctor if reporting any symptoms of the flu.
Hand sanitiser would be made available at all FOOD Week Festival events.
"We are monitoring coronavirus COVID-19 updates and adhering to the advice provided by local, state and Commonwealth agencies," the statement said.
"We will update ticket holders, partners and other stakeholders should circumstances change.
"We trust that this information provides you with an overview of the measures being implemented by FOOD Week and our commitment to maintaining a safe and enjoyable event experience for all."
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