Green Hotels Association
    May 2014  


GERMS on the menu!

Restaurant menus may harbor more germs and bacteria than any other surface in food-service location. According to studies, menus can have bacteria counts as high as 185,000 per square centimeter--far more than a toilet seat. 

The reason? Scores of people touch restaurant menus and yet they are rarely cleaned.

Of course, people don't get sick every time they touch a menu. But if the infectious dose is high enough, or the person touching the menu is a young child or has a compromised immune system, the likelihood can be significant.

According to Matt Morrison, communications director for Kaivac cleaning systems, restaurant patrons should "wash their hands after handling the menu."

The following are other so-called germ-centers in restaurants, along with suggestions on how to lessen the health threat they present.

FASTFOOD1.jpg Seats - Seats are one of the germiest spots in a restaurant. "They are rarely cleaned, and when they are, they are often quickly wiped down using a soiled towel," says Morrison.

 Solution: Try not to touch the seat or wash your hands before eating.

Ketchup bottles - Scores of people touch these, and they are rarely wiped down with a clean cloth. 

Solution: Hold the bottle with a napkin when using.

Lemon slices - A study by Passaic County Community College found that nearly 70% of the lemon slices placed in drinks or on dishes in restaurants carried potentially harmful microorganisms, typically because they are often not washed or properly washed before they are cut.

 Solution: Using a napkin, squeeze the juice out of the lemon, but do not drop the lemon slice in your drink.

Floors - We have as many as 50 direct and indirect contacts with floors every day. In a restaurant, floors can get heavily soiled and become the source of cross contamination. Solution: While a "quick clean" of floors may be necessary with mops and buckets, they can contribute to the problem if used too frequently.

"Restaurant managers should select healthier dispense-and-vac or spray-and-vac cleaning methods," says Morrison.

http://www.cmmonline.com/articles/233211-beware-of-germs-on-the-menu

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GREEN IDEA!

How to Clean: Fill your clean bucket with warm or hot water. No soap or cleaning product is needed. You�ll need a second bucket that is empty and will hold your wet and dirty cloths. Drop a number of microfiber cloths in the bucket. As you know, when we clean with a cloth and dip it back in the bucket to rinse it, the water continues to get dirtier and dirtier, so don�t do that. Take a cloth out of the bucket, wring it out, then fold it and fold it again. You�ll have eight sides of each cloth to use. Now begin cleaning in the cleanest part of the room (perhaps the window sills), and move to the dirtiest. You�ll clean the bathroom last.

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