The kitchen is the hub of most homes. It is where days start around the coffee maker or hunched over a bowl of cereal, where meals are made, and homework is done. Being such a packed part of your home where there is tons of foot traffic (and not just to the fridge) and where food prep takes place, hygiene in the kitchen needs to take precedence. Here are good hygiene practices that you need to adopt in your kitchen to keep you and your family safe and to keep foodborne illnesses such as E coli, gastroenteritis, salmonella poisoning, diarrhea, and even hepatitis A.
Sanitize Your Sponges and Dishcloths
Food particles can easily get stuck inside of the sponges and dishcloths that you use to clean dishes and your kitchen. They are the perfect hosts for bacteria and can end up transferring bacteria onto your countertops and stove as you use them to clean, leading to the spread of germs. To sanitize your sponges and dishcloths use a solution of one quart of warm water and 1 tsp liquid chlorine bleach for a few minutes. You can also put dishcloths through the washing machine. Dispose of all dishcloths and sponges every few months regardless of how often you sanitize them.
Wash Your Hands
The best thing that you can do to keep your kitchen hygienic is to wash your hands. Poor hand washing causes a quarter of food-borne illnesses. Before you begin to cook anything, wash your hands, and when you are cooking with raw meat make sure you wash your hands after you touch it and before touching anything else. Be careful to get under your fingernails and between your fingers. When handling raw meat, you can alternately use rubber gloves for extra protection, though you should still wash your hands afterward.
Keep Cutting Boards Clean & Separate
Cutting boards get a lot of action in the kitchen, and without proper care, they can end up harbouring a lot of nasty bacteria. If you have a plastic cutting board or a cutting board you can end up cutting grooves into it that are great hiding places for bacteria. Sanitize your cutting board once a week by submerging it in a solution of 1 tbsp of bleach to a gallon of warm water for around five minutes. It is also highly recommended to have multiple, colour coordinated or marked, cutting boards: one for meat and seafood, one for produce and bread, and one for dairy.
Clean Your Counters
Kitchen counters get a ton of traffic, and a lot of it isn’t food related. We throw grocery bags (which were probably set on the ground in the parking lot) onto them, our bags and keys, we do homework and arts and crafts while sitting at them, all of which can contaminate them and get into the food we prepare. Clean your countertops regularly and sanitize them with cleaner or hot water and liquid bleach once a week to stay healthy.
If your kitchen needs a throughout scrub down top to bottom, if you have moved into a new home and want it sanitized, or if you need cleaning on a regular basis, then you need to contact The Maids. Our professional cleaning staff take kitchen cleaning seriously and will get your kitchen sparkling. Contact us today for a quote.