|Common house kitchen sanitation||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Berrins (Berrinsaol.com)|
|Date: Thu, 27 Jan 2000 23:23:50 -0700 (MST)|
In a message dated 1/27/2000 11:41:38 AM, stuart [at] silicondefense.com writes: << Mmm. I'm one of those people who have a vague feeling that this issue is getting blown out of proportion (though I remain open minded to new information about it - I'm certainly no expert about food poisoning issues). I feel the case for a need to take more precautions than what comes naturally to the average cohouser hasn't yet been made convincingly. It's not just that I didn't die. I don't believe anyone has exhibited any case in which anyone got sick because they ate a community meal at a cohousing community. If there *have* been any cases I'd love to hear about them. But, assuming there haven't been any, it would seem that what comes naturally to John Q. Cohouser is mostly good enough. It seems to me that the need to start using measures like forbidding sponges, bleaching the counters, using color-coded cutting boards, etc, really isn't established. (I'm all for cooking food thoroughly, putting the leftovers away promptly, washing hands, etc). >> ******* Obviously, this issue extends far beyond cutting boards into the general issue of kitchen sanitation. Is food poisoning rare? No; someone posted the figures earlier, and every year thousands of people die from it. On the other hand, it's a low enough figure that it's unlikely anyone in a particular community will die of it. As cohousing grows, however, that likelihood increases. There is also a real good chance that someone will become sick (okay, not deathly ill, but sick nonetheless), from a highly preventable food bug. So, that said, could there be anyone out there who opposes good sanitation habits in the Common House Kitchen? I doubt it. So what's the big deal about learning some good sanitation habits and using them? It's not overkill; it's just the right way to clean up. If that means not using sponges and sticking with clean dry hand towels, so what? I can make the switch without giving it a second thought. And if next year the experts say toss the towel and use the sponges, I'll switch again. Good sanitation pratices are just another important thing we can share in cohousing. I'd like to learn how to make cabinets; I can give others some cooking tips and instruction on good habits on cooking with others in a kitchen. E.g., clearing off the space behind you so that someone else can use it, getting your pots and bowls into the sink to soak, putting things away so the next person can find them, the safest way to walk around the kitchen with a knife. When we show people how to use the equipment in the Common House kitchen, we'll throw in a workshop on sanitation and trust that people will listen. The kitchen issue brings us to another, larger, issue; "How clean is clean enough?" When is the kid's play area too cluttered? How often and how thoroughly do the bathrooms need to get cleaned? Good lord, unit #13, when are you gonna clear that crap off your porch? I'm curious how other communities deal with different levels of cleanliness. Any good ideas or solutions? -Roger
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