July 24, 2013

How Clean Is Your Kitchen?

When it comes to the kitchen, most people probably say that
their countertops and dinnerware are clean.  However, according to a recent article in the MinnPost which highlights a study from NSF International, a non-profit focused on public health and safety issues, we should focus on some unexpected places in our kitchens as well.

According to the study, the “Top Five Germ Hotspots” include blenders, spatulas, knife blocks, can openers and refrigerators. The findings from this report will undoubtedly get you reaching for your cleaning utensils because
the germs and other pathogens found in those hot spots are some of the nastiest around: salmonella, Listeria, E. coli, yeast and mold, according to the report.

Though the study consisted of a small sample– just 20 families swabbing 14 kitchen items, the results were astounding. Twenty-five percent were contaminated with both E. coli and Salmonella, 100 percent of items were contaminated with yeast and mold, and 10 percent with Listeria.  

The study’s authors had suggestions on ways we can ensure our kitchens are cleaner: “The lesson we can all learn as consumers is to follow manufacturer’s directions when it comes to cleaning and sanitizing kitchen
tools and appliances. For instance, blenders need to be disassembled, and the gasket pulled apart from the base, to be cleaned. Refrigerator vegetable and meat compartments need to be cleaned and sanitized regularly. Like all kitchen tools, can openers need washing and sanitizing after each use and rubber spatulas that are detachable should be pulled off the handle to be cleaned. Lastly, rubber seals should be thoroughly cleaned.”

Click here to learn more about the study.

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