Canadian Partnership for Consumer Food Safety Education

A FightBac!® Focus on Separate

Combat Cross-Contamination
Get It Straight - It's Safe to Separate!

Did you know that improper handling of raw meat, poultry and seafood can create an inviting environment for cross-contamination? As a result, bacteria can spread to other foods and throughout the kitchen. Clean and then sanitize counter tops, cutting boards and utensils with a mild bleach solution (5ml/1 tsp. bleach per 750ml/3 cups water) before and after food preparation. Consider using paper towels to wipe kitchen surfaces or change dishcloths daily to avoid spreading bacteria and, possibly, cross-contamination. Avoid using sponges because they are harder to keep bacteria-free, or wash them frequently in hot, soapy water.

Discard worn cutting boards

Keep It Clean! Lather Up

Always wash hands, cutting boards, dishes and utensils with hot, soapy water after they come in contact with raw meat, poultry and seafood. Sanitize them for the safest results. Plastic cutting boards can be cleaned and sanitized in the dishwasher.

Take Two

If possible, use one cutting board for fresh produce and use a separate one for raw meat, poultry and seafood. Watch those juices! Make sure to clean cutting board as described above.

Safely Separate

Separate raw meat, poultry and seafood from other foods in your grocery shopping cart and in your refrigerator.

Seal It

Seal raw meat, poultry and seafood in air-tight containers or plastic bags and place them on the bottom shelves of your refrigerator to prevent juices from dripping onto other food.

Clean Your Plate

Never place cooked food back on the same plate or cutting board that previously held raw food.

Marinating Mandate

Sauce that is used to marinate raw meat, poultry or seafood should not be used on cooked foods. Boil leftover marinade for 1 minute or prepare extra for basting cooked food. Wash and sanitize your brush or use separate brushes when marinating raw and cooked foods.