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Hand Hygiene Regimens for the Reduction of Risk in Food Service Environments

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Abstract:

Pathogenic strains of Escherichia coli and human norovirus are the main etiologic agents of foodborne illness resulting from inadequate hand hygiene practices by food service workers. This study was conducted to evaluate the antibacterial and antiviral efficacy of various hand hygiene product regimens under different soil conditions representative of those in food service settings and assess the impact of product formulation on this efficacy. On hands contaminated with chicken broth containing E. coli, representing a moderate soil load, a regimen combining an antimicrobial hand washing product with a 70% ethanol advanced formula (EtOH AF) gel achieved a 5.22-log reduction, whereas a nonantimicrobial hand washing product alone achieved a 3.10log reduction. When hands were heavily soiled from handling ground beef containing E. coli, a wash-sanitize regimen with a 0.5% chloroxylenol antimicrobial hand washing product and the 70% EtOH AF gel achieved a 4.60-log reduction, whereas a wash-sanitize regimen with a 62% EtOH foam achieved a 4.11-log reduction. Sanitizing with the 70% EtOH AF gel alone was more effective than hand washing with a nonantimicrobial product for reducing murine norovirus (MNV), a surrogate for human norovirus, with 2.60- and 1.79-log reductions, respectively. When combined with hand washing, the 70% EtOH AF gel produced a 3.19-log reduction against MNV. A regimen using the SaniTwice protocol with the 70% EtOH AF gel produced a 4.04-log reduction against MNV. These data suggest that although the process of hand washing helped to remove pathogens from the hands, use of a wash-sanitize regimen was even more effective for reducing organisms. Use of a high-efficacy sanitizer as part of a wash-sanitize regimen further increased the efficacy of the regimen. The use of a well-formulated alcohol-based hand rub as part of a wash-sanitize regimen should be considered as a means to reduce risk of infection transmission in food service facilities.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-11-449

Affiliations: 1: GOJO Industries, Inc., One GOJO Plaza, Suite 500, Akron, Ohio 44311, USA. edmondss@gojo.com 2: BioScience Laboratories, Inc., 300 North Willson, Suite 1, Bozeman, Montana 59771, USA 3: MICROBIOTEST, Microbac Laboratories, Inc., 105B Carpenter Drive, Sterling, Virginia 20164, USA 4: GOJO Industries, Inc., One GOJO Plaza, Suite 500, Akron, Ohio 44311, USA

Publication date: July 1, 2012

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    The Journal of Food Protection (JFP) is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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