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Using Gloves in the Kitchen


Chris Amirault
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You quit because of the law?

Yup, pretty much gloves and my swollen ankles :sad:

T

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

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Chris, why would ya think to wash your hands when you have gloves on?...your hands are clean...now the gloves, who knows?

If you are working bare handed you know damn well when your hands are dirty and you wash them

ok, not going any deeper into this it has been done before

just ask your deli/fish etc. server to change their gloves if they already have some on

T

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

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I quit cooking professionally when NJ started with a glove law, but I use them for meatballs and portioning out meat into freezer bags after shopping

Chris, why would ya think to wash your hands when you have gloves on?

Just being foolish, I supposed, but I was operating under the (perhaps mistaken) assumption that if NJ has a law requiring gloves, they had some reason to believe that gloves were more sanitary. While I totally understand many of Chris's reasons for wearing gloves (better grip, less likely to get capsaicin in your eyes, no purple hands after slicing beets, etc.) I cannot understand the sanitary implications. I suppose I may just cook different cuisine, but I very seldom have more than two proteins, so that means washing my hands three times (once before, once after the first, and once again after the second) - not that big a deal. Once they are prepped I use tongs. In addition, I find that when I take gloves off I am as likely as not to actually end up touching the "contaminated" area of the glove with either my hand or arm while taking it off, so I end up having to wash my hands anyway.

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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What is the sanitary purpose of gloves? Are they actually superior to hand-washing in any quantifiable way? Or are they meant to be used *in addition to* hand washing (in an industrial and/or commercial setting)?

I started using them when my hands began to dry, crack & bleed from all the washing.

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I started using them when my hands began to dry, crack & bleed from all the washing.

I'd buy that - but I wouldn't buy that the State of New Jersey cares... :smile:

I would suspect that the state feels gloves are cleaner than the average washed hands (quick rinse, no cleaning around/under fingernails)...and they may well be right.

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I would suspect that the state feels gloves are cleaner than the average washed hands (quick rinse, no cleaning around/under fingernails)...and they may well be right.

It's possible, but I'd love to see some research to back it up. A lot of things that seem like common sense fact end up being false upon closer inspection.

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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If it helps, in the lab where I work, our rule is that clean gloves from the box are "cleaner" than washed hands. Once you have handled items, cross contamination can happen very easily and often does if people are not trained in how to prevent it. Many students assume gloves are "clean" just because they are not hands. Gloves are simply another tool, and we use them mostly to protect ourselves from chemicals. Hence my recommendation for their use with quantities of capsaicin loaded peppers (despite C. sapidus' taunting...). I peeled several pounds of roasted poblanos once only to have my hands burn for hours :shock: . An adventure - maybe. One I want to repeat - not so much! :wink:

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I will wear gloves if I have any cuts or burns on my hands and when dealing with really hot chilies. I overcome the messy phone problem (and the messy TV converter) by wrapping them in plastic cling film. Leave the infra-red sensor free on the converter and the terminals free on wireless phones and both work perfectly. This is a trick I learned from my daughter.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

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I would suspect that the state feels gloves are cleaner than the average washed hands (quick rinse, no cleaning around/under fingernails)...and they may well be right.

It's possible, but I'd love to see some research to back it up. A lot of things that seem like common sense fact end up being false upon closer inspection.

There have been numerous clincial studies of cultures taken from scrapings under nails of surgeons after they had scrubbed with antibacterial soap for 5 to 10 minutes.

The number and variety of pathogens that survived included some very nasty bugs, E. Coli, Beta Hemolytic Strep, Staph, as well as Candida albicans and other yeasts, molds, etc. (They didn't list the viruses found).

Slightly OT, I mentioned in a post a few years ago, that at one restaurant I had refused to be served by a server who had very long nails. After she took our order, I observed her while she was talking to another server at the beverage station, scratch her scalp, then turn and pick up three plates from the pass through and carry them to another table.

This was disgusting. The thing that bothers me is that many people do similar things unconsciously while they are handling food and if wearing gloves reminds them to think before they cross contaminate foods, then I think they are a good idea.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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If it helps, in the lab where I work, our rule is that clean gloves from the box are "cleaner" than washed hands.  Once you have handled items, cross contamination can happen very easily and often does if people are not trained in how to prevent it.  Many students assume gloves are "clean" just because they are not hands.  Gloves are simply another tool, and we use them mostly to protect ourselves from chemicals.  Hence my recommendation for their use with quantities of capsaicin loaded peppers (despite C. sapidus' taunting...).  I peeled several pounds of roasted poblanos once only to have my hands burn for hours  :shock: .  An adventure - maybe.  One I want to repeat - not so much!  :wink:

i recall reading something about this, where the subjects repeatedly failed to wash their hands before removing the gloves from the box, thereby potentially contaminating the glove beneath, if not the whole batch.

of course, best practice would be to wash thoroughly, then retrieve a glove from the box, but that didn't happen. i think the over-reliance on gloves diminishes the importance of hand-washing in the minds of many.

"Laughter is brightest where food is best."

www.chezcherie.com

Author of The I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook ,The I Love Trader Joe's Party Cookbook and The I Love Trader Joe's Around the World Cookbook

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I think there are valid arguments both for and against the use of gloves.

The Food Safety Authority said improper glove use could be just as unhygienic as inadequate hand washing, as most gloves used for food preparation were permeable, allowing germs from dirty hands to escape through the gloves on to food. And glove wearers who could not feel food scraps or juice on their hands might wash their hands less frequently.

Read the full article here.

When I see people peel off those gloves by pulling them up from the wrist and pretty much turning them inside out, I am reminded of a sneeze and wonder how many sweaty pathogens are released into the air with this action. :shock:

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I would suspect that the state feels gloves are cleaner than the average washed hands (quick rinse, no cleaning around/under fingernails)...and they may well be right.

It's possible, but I'd love to see some research to back it up. A lot of things that seem like common sense fact end up being false upon closer inspection.

This reminds me of the government-mandated switch from wooden cutting boards to the plastic kind, on the theory that they were more sanitary. Seems obvious enough in theory, but I don't think there's any evidence that there's any improvement in overall health outcomes in practice.

I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

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This reminds me of the government-mandated switch from wooden cutting boards to the plastic kind, on the theory that they were more sanitary.  Seems obvious enough in theory, but I don't think there's any evidence that there's any improvement in overall health outcomes in practice.

Yeah, that's exactly what I was thinking of. I don't think it matters if washing your hands removes 99.999% of bacteria and wearing gloves eliminates 99.9999% -- I want to know the actual impact on sanitation practices. If that 0.0009% difference doesn't actually have any tangible affect, then does it matter? In a hospital situation is one thing, weakened immune systems, etc. But in a home kitchen? Dunno... I am obviously not an expert in the field, but I have been trained to question assumptions...

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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further on the aspect of meat prep...

one would think to prep those foods which could possibly be eaten raw (i.e., fruits & veg in a mainstream kitchen) before handling such risky items as uncooked meat or fish. If I run into a major cross-contaminant issue (i.e., seafood or nut allergy), the allergen is the last item handled, after everything else is mised. This is not in a reso kitchen, it's at home. In my 550 sq ft. apartment; apartment, not kitchen :-)

But anyways,

I use disposable latex or vinyl (whatever is on sale, I don't have an allergy) gloves, for dipping anything into melted chocolate, putting cookies or shortbread into gift bags, making meatballs, shaping butter, portioning fish, re-packing large orders of meats & poultry, deboning or portioning chicken. Basically, any task during which something can get stuck under my fingernails, or where fingerprints on the final "product" are undesirable. Which are not long.

Definitely not a matter of hygiene. Merely esthetics.

Nothing beats proper hand washing.

Karen Dar Woon

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If it helps, in the lab where I work, our rule is that clean gloves from the box are "cleaner" than washed hands.  Once you have handled items, cross contamination can happen very easily and often does if people are not trained in how to prevent it.  Many students assume gloves are "clean" just because they are not hands.  Gloves are simply another tool, and we use them mostly to protect ourselves from chemicals...snipped

i recall reading something about this, where the subjects repeatedly failed to wash their hands before removing the gloves from the box, thereby potentially contaminating the glove beneath, if not the whole batch.

of course, best practice would be to wash thoroughly, then retrieve a glove from the box, but that didn't happen. i think the over-reliance on gloves diminishes the importance of hand-washing in the minds of many.

We teach everyone to wash hands before using gloves. Teaching and practice however...

I think the issue hinges upon the two basic uses of gloves in a home kitchen. Are you trying to protect your hands from something (capsaicin, harsh soaps, etc.), or are you trying to prevent cross contamination of foods (e.g., chicken juice on raw veggies).

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the only time I really use gloves in the kitchen is when I am hand tossing something in marinade

or cleaning up with a strong bleach water

more because I prefer my hands not smell all day than any other reason

I dont cut things with gloves on because I have cut part of the glove off and not realized it ..not what I wanted to find on my plate later :raz:

Edited by hummingbirdkiss (log)
why am I always at the bottom and why is everything so high? 

why must there be so little me and so much sky?

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In the early 1990s, I believe it was, there was an epidemic of Hepatitis A in the Syracuse, NY, area. I've seen it written many times that the implementation of a glove law was what brought the epidemic under control. I don't know whether that's true or not, but it's an oft-repeated proof of the efficacy of gloves.

Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
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Today I have one gloved hand in the kitchen because I got careless with a brand new chef's knife yesterday. :sad: It is so very awkward! I am afraid that I will cut myself AGAIN simply because I have lost my dexterity. I hate gloves!

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I just can't stand the waste involved with using gloves properly in a food safety context. When I worked in a molecular biology lab (slightly different, granted) we would burn through 500 glove boxes in no time. If you're really anal you end up changing gloves every 5 min or so (Need to season your meat? new gloves. Non gloved finger accidentally touched the cutting board? new gloves).

Slightly OT, but do you folks distinguish between vegetables cooked with the meat and vegetables served on the side (would you change your gloves to cut the onions that go into the stock pot/roasting pan with your meat?)

Martin Mallet

<i>Poor but not starving student</i>

www.malletoyster.com

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Regarding unconscious actions that could impact the health of others............

On the 6:00 news last evening, there was a segment showing a hot dog vendor picking his nose, then using the same hand to prepare a hot dog and hand it to a child.

It is practically impossible to perform the nasal reaming task while wearing gloves.............

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Regarding unconscious actions that could impact the health of others............

On the 6:00 news last evening, there was a segment showing a hot dog vendor picking his nose, then using the same hand to prepare a hot dog and hand it to a child.

It is practically impossible to perform the nasal reaming task while wearing gloves.............

But he could pick up a quarter from the gutter :huh:

T

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

garden state motorcyle association

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I just can't stand the waste involved with using gloves properly in a food safety context. When I worked in a molecular biology lab (slightly different, granted) we would burn through 500 glove boxes in no time. If you're really anal you end up changing gloves every 5 min or so (Need to season your meat? new gloves. Non gloved finger accidentally touched the cutting board? new gloves).

Slightly OT, but do you folks distinguish between vegetables cooked with the meat and vegetables served on the side (would you change your gloves to cut the onions that go into the stock pot/roasting pan with your meat?)

The only time I worry about crossing with raw veg is if they aren't going to be cooked at all

Salad can be a very dangerous thing

T

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

garden state motorcyle association

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Gloves are obviously a good sanitary precaution in a kitchen, but some people are very negligent about changing their gloves. Case in point:

I work in a kitchen, I am a line slave, I do not touch contaminants (i.e. raw meat, or products in which people sometimes have an alergy to). I also work expo (wiping plates, yelling at servers and runners, wearing the CLEAN jacket). Another expo wears gloves religiously. One night I saw him repositioning raw oysters on a plate, then immediately garnish a salad without changing the gloves. Seeing my opportunity to get payback for him calling me "filthy" for not wearing gloves, I asked him what he would say to the rest of the table after he found out if that person he sent the salad to was alergic to shellfish. He turned pale and asked me if that were really the case.

"No, stupid. By the way, I wash my hands three times as much as you change your gloves, and I don't touch the god *%$@ shellfish."

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