Study: Antibacterials Soaps Can Reduce Risk of Foodborne Illness
• Research in Journal of Food Protection Finds Antibacterial Soap Significantly Reduces Risk of Illness Compared to Non-antibacterial Soap
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 15, 2014 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Newly published research shows that the use of antibacterial soaps can reduce the spread of harmful bacteria – that often leads to foodborne illness – more effectively than using non-antibacterial soaps.
The research, published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Food Protection (Vol. 77, No. 4, 2014, pp. 574-582), used new laboratory data, together with simulation techniques, to compare the ability of non-antibacterial and antibacterial products to reduce the risk of the infectious disease shigellosis, which is often spread during food preparation.
Lead researcher Donald Schaffner of Rutgers University’s Department of Food Science says the data show that the use of three antibacterial wash products result in a statistically significant reduction in the presence of Shigella (the bacterium that causes shigellosis) compared to the use of the non-antibacterial soaps.
“This exciting research blends quantitative microbial risk assessments with an impressive set of laboratory data to show that antibacterial treatments are more effective than non-antibacterial treatments in reducing disease,” said Dr. Schaffner.
In the study, 163 subjects were used to compare two non-antibacterial products and three antibacterial products, with a study design intended to simulate food handling. The participants’ hands were exposed to Shigella and then treated with one of the five products before handling food melon balls. The resulting levels of Shigella on the food were then measured. Read more…