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Offline motu

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Question about Bacteria
« on: 19/12/2007 20:40:27 »
Hi everyone. I just signed up after enjoying reading many of the questions and answers here... now I have one :)

If I have a sponge that is infested with bacteria (let's say I rubbed it all over a raw chicken and soaked up some raw eggs!). I take that sponge and scrub a plate 'clean' with it. I then use a 100% clean dish-towel to rub the plate dry. If the plate is dry, will there be bacteria on it? Will they multiply?

Can they even survive without moisture? I'm sure that the plate and moisture bacteria will then transfer onto the dish towel (meaning danger for the next items being dryed), but assuming this plate is completely dry, I'm wondering what this will mean for bacteria. Does dryness = death to bacteria? And if
so, how quickly?

Looking forward to hearing people's thoughts.

Thanks,

M


 

another_someone

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #1 on: 20/12/2007 06:04:09 »
Bacteria do need moisture to grow (but many can survive in a dormant state without moisture); but don't forget that the very atmosphere contains sufficient moisture for most bacteria, so the fact that the plate is dry to the touch does not mean it is totally dry.

That having been said, moisture is a prerequisite, but not a sufficiency - it also needs sources of nutrients (although again these can be very small amounts - and no matter how much you rub a plate, it will still contain small traces of organic matter on its surface, and more will settle from dust in the atmosphere).

On the other hand, small amounts of bacteria are something your body is used to dealing with (unless you have a compromised immune system) - so you are not really looking for a bacteria free environment, only to keep levels of bacteria sufficiently low that you immune system is capable of dealing with the small residual amount (what is a sufficiently low amount depends on the type of the bacteria, and your own state of health, and how the bacteria enters your body).
 

Offline Karen W.

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #2 on: 20/12/2007 13:52:59 »
Hi everyone. I just signed up after enjoying reading many of the questions and answers here... now I have one :)

If I have a sponge that is infested with bacteria (let's say I rubbed it all over a raw chicken and soaked up some raw eggs!). I take that sponge and scrub a plate 'clean' with it. I then use a 100% clean dish-towel to rub the plate dry. If the plate is dry, will there be bacteria on it? Will they multiply?

Can they even survive without moisture? I'm sure that the plate and moisture bacteria will then transfer onto the dish towel (meaning danger for the next items being dryed), but assuming this plate is completely dry, I'm wondering what this will mean for bacteria. Does dryness = death to bacteria? And if
so, how quickly?

Looking forward to hearing people's thoughts.

Thanks,

M

Welcome to the site and Thanks for the wonderful Question.



 

Offline Karen W.

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #3 on: 20/12/2007 13:53:47 »
Bacteria do need moisture to grow (but many can survive in a dormant state without moisture); but don't forget that the very atmosphere contains sufficient moisture for most bacteria, so the fact that the plate is dry to the touch does not mean it is totally dry.

That having been said, moisture is a prerequisite, but not a sufficiency - it also needs sources of nutrients (although again these can be very small amounts - and no matter how much you rub a plate, it will still contain small traces of organic matter on its surface, and more will settle from dust in the atmosphere).

On the other hand, small amounts of bacteria are something your body is used to dealing with (unless you have a compromised immune system) - so you are not really looking for a bacteria free environment, only to keep levels of bacteria sufficiently low that you immune system is capable of dealing with the small residual amount (what is a sufficiently low amount depends on the type of the bacteria, and your own state of health, and how the bacteria enters your body).

Great answers George, I have always wondered about that myself.. Thanks!
 

paul.fr

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #4 on: 20/12/2007 13:59:04 »
Air conditioning will also create moisture in the room, drip trays, your hands and even tea towels can harbor bacteria.
 

Offline Karen W.

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #5 on: 20/12/2007 14:07:47 »
I wouldn't have thought about air conditioners but that makes perfect sense!
 

Offline opus

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #6 on: 20/12/2007 15:27:47 »
bacteria are everywhere so you can only rely on risk minimisation by washing hands before touching food and using anti-bacterial sprays on your kitchen work surfaces and in bathrooms. They'll get you in the end though!
 

Offline motu

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #7 on: 23/12/2007 23:48:04 »
Thanks for the responses everyone. George, I really like the way you think about it; Bacteria minimization, rather than bacteria elimination. Much less stressful!
 

Offline chels

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #8 on: 22/01/2008 23:07:54 »
even more dangerous if its a spore-forming bacterium! it'll stay there indefinitely until it gets its happy little environment back....like when you put your dinner on it!
 

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Question about Bacteria
« Reply #8 on: 22/01/2008 23:07:54 »

 

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