Food Safety: Grocery Store Bags

by in Food Safety, April 22, 2012
re-usable bag
Your grocery bag may be green, but is it clean?

Many folks love their eco-friendly re-usable grocery bags. But when’s the last time you washed them? A new survey found that only 15% of Americans regularly clean their totes, putting them at a higher risk for food poisoning.

The Issue
A recent survey conducted by the Home Food Safety Program found 85% of Americans aren’t washing their re-usable grocery bags. Raw foods like meat, poultry and fish carry harmful bacteria which can linger in your totes waiting to board ready-to-eat foods like produce. The risk is even higher with the spring weather setting in as bacteria love to flourish at warm temperatures. Luckily, it’s easy to keep you and your family safe from food bugs.

What You Can Do

  • Wash those bags frequently in the washing machine (if they’re cloth) or by hand with soap and hot water. Be sure they’re dry before you tuck them away.
  • Bags with a plastic coating can also be wiped down with antibacterial spray or wipes.
  • To prevent cross-contamination from juices, place meat, poultry and fish in a separate plastic bag before placing in your re-usable bag.
  • Wash your hands after unpacking grocery bags.
  • Clean any areas that come in contact with your re-usable bag like the kitchen counter or table. This will help reduce the risk of cross-contamination.
  • Don’t leave bags in the trunk of your car. Instead, store them in a clean, dry place.
  • Toss bags that are torn or ripped, especially the insulated ones.

Don’t Forget About….
It’s not only re-usable grocery bags that need a thorough cleaning. Water bottles and lunch boxes need to be cleaned regularly too. Lunch boxes should be cleaned after each use. Leftover food should be discarded, then use hot, soapy water and let air dry. To get rid of stinky odors, use baking powder or a touch of vinegar. To clean your re-usable water bottles, read the manufacturer’s instructions – some can’t go in the dishwasher and must be cleaned by hand.

TELL US: Do you wash your re-usable grocery bags?

You Might Also Like:

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby’s full bio »

More posts from .

Similar Posts

Can Hypoallergenic Peanuts Live Up to the Hype?

Researchers claim they have the answer to those suffering from peanut allergies. But is a hypoallergenic peanut all it’s cracked up to be?

Comments (280)

  1. Clonazepam says:

    klonopin…

    I discovered your blog site on google and check a few of your early posts. Continue to keep up the very good operate. I just additional up your RSS feed to my MSN News Reader. Seeking forward to reading more from you later on!�…

  2. Accutane…

    very nice post…

  3. klonopin…

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this give…

  4. When I first saw this title Food Safety: Grocery Store Bags | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog on google I just whent and bookmark it. Thanks for the good writeup. It in fact was once a entertainment account it. Glance complicated to more introduced agreeable from you! However, how could we communicate?

  5. [...] Grocery Store Workers Creatively Celebrate July 4thFood Safety: Grocery Store Bags #header { background: [...]

  6. Percocet says:

    valium…

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this give…

  7. I’ve been exploring for a little for any high quality articles or blog posts in this kind of house . Exploring in Yahoo I finally stumbled upon this website. Studying this information So i am satisfied to express that I’ve a very good uncanny feeling I came upon just what I needed. I most without a doubt will make certain to do not disregard this site and provides it a look regularly.

  8. Shane Gron says:

    A domain name name, or Internet address, is an deal with where it’s simple to be observed online. It’s how you will communicate yourself by means of e-mail or your website and it’s which buyers assume of once attempting to discover you.

  9. You really are a very convincing writer. I can easily see this in your article. A person have a way with words compelling data in which sparks significantly curiosity.

  10. vicodin says:

    ativan…

    pepole are pepole…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>