Before you ask, no, MasterChef Australia wasn’t lucky enough to wrap up filming before the restrictions around social distancing were implemented amid the coronavirus pandemic. So, what does that mean for the future of this season? 

Despite production on The Bachelor, The Voice, Big Brother, Neighbours and Home & Away coming to a complete halt, MasterChef is still going ahead. With filming kicking off in January when social distancing restrictions were not in place, the production team has revealed that the show must go on, revealing the new guidelines that have been implemented for the program.

Masterchef Australia: Back To Win is currently being filmed in Melbourne, and working in strict accordance with government guidelines.

“MasterChef Australia has always employed the highest standards of food safety and hygiene, and we now have an even keener focus on that,” a spokesperson for Endemol Shine Australia said.

“All recommendations outlined by Federal and State government health authorities are being followed.”

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However, these new measures don’t just involve social distancing and an influx of hand sanitiser.

“On the set, changes will be made to the spacing of contestant cooking benches and gloves provided for team challenges where equipment may be shared, as well as when handling food in the pantry.

“Additional sinks have been added as dedicated hand washing stations, so as to separate from any food preparation.

“Judges will step up to taste individually portioned meals and no cutlery or plates will be shared.”

Judging by the phenomenal ratings the program received, this is exactly the show Aussies need during times like these.

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The reality program, which premiered on Channel Ten last night, had an average audience of 1.562 million – 71.7 per cent up on last year’s launch figure of 715,000 metro viewers. These insane figures absolutely crushed the first episode of Married At First Sight this year, which shouts success for Network 10.

Viacom CBS Australia and New Zealand chief content officer and executive vice president, Beverley McGarvey, is ecstatic with how well received the new season has been.

“12 seasons in and MasterChef Australia is still loved by so many people. Food is a universal theme, particularly in times like these, and our show has always been about the food.

“A big thanks to the massive team, on and off screen who put this show together, thanks to our brand new judges, Jock Zonfrillo, Melissa Leong and Andy Allen, our brilliant returning contestants and to our wonderful guest judge Gordon Ramsay.

“The cooking, passion and energy in MasterChef Australia this year is amazing and it is going to be a really thrilling season,” she told Mumbrella.

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Masterchef: Back To Win continues tonight at 7:30pm on Channel 10.