Be Food Safe Clean

Be Food Safe clean logo

Be Food Safe - Clean.

Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water before and after handling food. Clean hands are one of the best ways to protect your family.

Graphic of a Wash Your Hands posterPicture of someone washing their handsFollow the instructions from this page to do a good hand washing job!!

Washing your hands properly is one of the most important things you can do to keep microorganisms from contaminating food.

The following are a few of the situations after which you should wash your hands before you begin to prepare food:


  • Using the restroom
  • Handling raw meat, fish, or poultry
  • Sneezing, coughing, or using a tissue
  • Smoking, eating,drinking, or chewing gum or tobacco
  • Taking out the trashPicture of different color cutting boards being placed in dishwasher

Wash hands, utensils, and cutting boards before and after contact with raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs.

Run your cutting boards and utensils through the dishwasher or wash them in hot, soapy water each and every time you use them to prevent bacteria from spreading.

Picture of someone washing a kitchen countertop with soapy water


Always keep your countertops clean by washing them—again with hot soapy water—after preparing food.



Sponges vs. Paper Towels

Picture of a sponge with a DO NOT emblem on it Picture of a roll of paper towels

  • Foodborne bacteria can multiply quickly in kitchen towels, sponges and cloths.
  • Wash sponges and cloths in the washing machine to reduce bacteria levels.
  • Paper towels reduce the risk of cross-contamination because they are disposable, and therefore less likely to harbor and spread bacteria.


Cleaning vs. Sanitizing

  • Cleaning removes food and other types of visible soil using a detergent.
  • Sanitizing reduces the number of microorganisms on a clean surface to safe levels.
  • Mix 1 teaspoon chlorine bleach in one quart of clean water and apply liberally to all kitchen surfaces to sanitize properly.

Download a BE FOOD SAFE Clean poster (PDF)

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