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Ensuring Kitchen Hygiene as the Key to Family Health


Cuci Piring

Based on a report from Environ Microbiol research in February 2013, the kitchen is one of the most vulnerable places for the spread of pathogenic bacteria and bacteria that cause foodborne diseases. This is because the kitchen is a place where raw materials are cooked, where dirty utensils are piled up as well as a place where people pass by in the house to cook or take food.

Facts from the BPOM Annual Report in 2016 also show that the cause of most food poisoning is microbes. Sadly, the place where food poisoning occurs is the residence, which should be the safest and most hygienic place to process and consume food. This indicates that people have not implemented food safety practices, including sanitation and hygiene properly. Therefore, it is important for us to protect our family's health by keeping the kitchen clean and hygienic.

As the center of food processing at home, the kitchen stores various cooking utensils that are used every day. Dirty cooking utensils must be cleaned and sanitized quickly because the growth of microorganisms occurs quickly. In 20 minutes, one bacterial cell grows into two cells, until over time 100 bacterial cells grow into 200 cells. Disease-causing bacteria that commonly develop in the kitchen include Salmonella, Staphylococcus aureus, E. coli, and Campylobacter jejuni. To eliminate these bacteria, good cleaning and sanitizing techniques with good quality cleaning fluids are required.

Good cleaning and sanitizing techniques with good quality cleaning fluids aim to remove dirt from food and microorganisms that accumulate on the equipment as well as prevent the formation of biofilms or thin layers of bacteria that stick to the surface of cooking equipment. Cleaning is done to remove dirt from equipment, facilities, water and people so that they do not become a source of contamination for microbial growth. Meanwhile, sanitization is done to kill pathogenic and spoilage microbes so that they cannot multiply and contaminate food.

Tips on Keeping Cooking Utensils Clean

Dirty cooking utensils can easily become a breeding ground for bacteria, especially since the growth of bacteria on food scraps that stick to the utensils is rapid. When dirty cooking utensils are not washed immediately, it becomes easier for bacteria to grow. Bacteria that have developed can last for days and can spread everywhere. Some utensils that are prone to harboring bacteria are rags and sponges. Therefore, there are ways to keep the washcloths and sponges in the kitchen clean.

Washcloths in the kitchen can easily become a hotbed of bacteria because bacteria from the utensils will stick to the washcloth and can be transferred to other utensils when the washcloth is used. One of the most effective ways to keep washcloths clean is to use different washcloths to wipe clean utensils and tables. In addition, washcloths should be washed frequently. To avoid exposure to bacteria on other utensils, the best way to dry cooking utensils is to air dry them after washing.

Apart from dishcloths, sponges are also prone to harboring bacteria. When used to wash cooking utensils, sponges absorb nutrients from the food being cleaned while supporting bacterial growth and becoming a means of spreading bacteria. To prevent this, wash and boil sponges regularly after washing or microwaving, and then dry them. The very least that can be done to keep sponges clean is that they should be washed after each use and dried. Also, rotate the use of sponges and use different sponges for different purposes. It would also be good if the sponge is changed every week.

For other cooking utensils, remove food residue from the utensils, then rinse with water. Dip them in a soap or detergent solution and scrub with a sponge, brush or cloth. Always keep the scrubbing tool clean to prevent the spread of bacteria. After that, rinse with water and dip in hot water or water that has been given a disinfectant/antibacterial such as Sunlight Higienis containing Lime & Habbatussauda, which can kill bacteria and prevent bacterial growth on the sponge 100 times more effectively than ordinary dishwashing soap.

Making the kitchen the center of family warmth and health means constantly striving to keep the area clean. For a family that is always healthy and fit, good cleaning and sanitizing techniques using good quality cleaning fluids are the most important factors so that families avoid various diseases caused by bacteria and microbes from food waste.

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