Even professional kitchens where all the food preparation surfaces are stainless steel can acquire biofilms of infectious bacteria, David Morrison says. Biofilms are colonies of bacteria, yeasts, fungi, single-celled animals called protozoans, corrosion products from stainless steel, and kitchen debris.
Because the microorganisms in biofilms stick to each other, Morrison says, they resist being removed by wiping and washing. They grow like moss on rocks in a river and can even take over a counter that is never cleaned in a layer several inches thick.
Outside of apartments occupied by college students, it is unusual to see a biofilm on a kitchen preparation surface. But inadequate sanitation, David Morrison advises, lets germs linger so they can contaminate food and make customers sick repeatedly.
Have you ever seen an advertisement that claims that a spray-on cleanser cleans 99 percent of germs on contact? Sort of like a claim that mouthwash kills 99 percent of bad breath germs, but you get bad breath anyway?
Germ-killing claims are true as far as they go, David Morrison of Boca Raton says. But they refer to killing germs in what is called a planktonic state.
The same way plankton float in the ocean individually, not in clumps, there will always be some germs that are not attached to other germs in commercial kitchens, locker rooms, public restrooms, daycare centers, and clinics. Disinfectants do a good job of getting rid of these germs.
The germs that disinfectants don’t kill—the majority of germs—are connected by “extracellular polymeric substances.” This mouthful of a term just means that they secrete a kind of sugary glue that resists washing, scrubbing, and short-term contact with disinfectants.
Even stainless steel corrodes and develops tiny pockets of corrosion. Bacteria and other germs can anchor themselves in these invisible defects on the surface to resist cleaning.
Safety Wercs LLC makes alcohol-based wipes that eliminate biofilms without hours of labor-intensive scrubbing and dangerous chemicals with noxious fumes. Safety Wercs LLC also sells an ATP fluorescence meter that can detect biofilms in concentrations as low as a billionth of a standard measurement called a mole in 15 seconds or less/
Biofilms cost businesses billions of dollars every year. David Morrison’s Safety Wercs LLC can help your business stay clean and make more money.
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