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"Cross-contamination of pathogens happens all the time - before, during and after food preparation. What is needed is a well defined set of criteria, enabling the employee to identify what exactly is to be cleaned, and with which tools."
      — John C. Lewis Jr, Tucel Industries, Inc.

Cleaning and maintenance program must have guidlines focusing on physical waste products, chemical residues, and microbiological contamination in various forms, from pathogenic bacterium and/or fungus. These forms of contamination can range from bacteria on employee's hands and simple wet spots from spilled liquids, to arid cracks in equipment, the lodging of granular substances in crevices, and cooked food lodged in utensils. In order to clean these surfaces, it is necessary to perform four basic steps: wash, rinse, sanitize and dry. The washing process obviously requires a liquid medium and a tool to physically remove grime, for instance a brush or broom. There are numerous variations of brushware, including handset, staple-set, twisted-in-wire resin-set, epoxy, wound and fused. With it's emphasis on cross-contamination curing use, the fused construction proves to be superior as there are no gaps for harboring bacteria. Often the most important, however, is the nail brush, which is the most effective way of removing any chance for cross-contamination from hands during food prepertation.

Food Service

There are two types of brushware for food service: brushes and brooms that clean the non-food surfaces in kitchens, in food process plants and in large food, medical and chemical institutions: and those that are used directly on food for cleaning and basting new, cooked and pastry type foods. Colour coding should be used to distinguish between the non-food surfaces, and surfaces in direct contact with food. The color of the brush filaments should then alert the user to double check the danger of cross contamination, and thus reduce the risks of food poisoning.

The proper cleaning of the brush is crucial to insure that any contaminates are eliminated pior to subsequent use. The same four steps should be followed for cleaning a brushware tool as are used for general cleaning: wash, rinse, sanitise and dry. It is a good practice to wash small brushes and scrubbing tools in a dishwasher if available.


John C. Lewis, Jr is President of Tucel Industries, Inc, and a consultant patentee in the field of manufacturing brushes, brooms, squeegees, scours and sponges for the Janitorial, Sanitary, Maintenance, Infectious Disease and Food Service Industry.

Phone 802.247.6824    FAX 802.247.6826    info@tucel.com

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