Cleaning and Sanitizing

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Illness causing bacteria can survive in many places around your kitchen, such as your hands, utensils and cutting boards. Reduce the risk of spreading bacteria to your food and your family by washing your hands, utensils and surfaces often and the right way.

  • Wash your hands briskly for at least 20 seconds with warm running water and plain soap.
  • Rinse them well and dry them with a clean towel.

Everyone in your family should always wash their hands:
o Before eating food.
o Before, during and after preparing food.
o Before and after treating a cut or wound.
o Before and after caring for someone who is sick.
o After handling uncooked eggs or raw meat, poultry or seafood.
o After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
o After touching an animal.
o After touching garbage.
o After using the toilet.

Bacteria can also be spread throughout your kitchen if food contact surfaces and utensils are not cleaned and sanitized frequently. Remember these tips to alleviate the spread of bacteria in your home:

  • After preparing each food item, thoroughly wash your cutting boards, dishes, utensils and countertops.
  • Use a clean cloth to wipe up spills and kitchen surfaces.
  • And as an extra precaution, add one tablespoon of liquid chlorine bleach to one gallon of water and use it to sanitize washed surfaces and utensils in your home kitchen.

For additional Food Safety cleaning facts, refer to foodsafety.gov.