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Heat generally aids the growth of bacteria, so putting a dirty cutting board in direct sunlight probably isn't a very good idea. Soap usually does the job just fine. Actually, the direct sunlight is likely not necessary, but if you did, that process does have the capability of killing off bacteria and virii. At the high end of the light spectrum is Ultraviolet (UV-a, UV-b and UV-c). This high-energy light is by itself a bactericide and viricide. Additionally, studies show that UV-A combined with increasing the temperature to over 50C works synergistically. More, beyond being a bactericide, exposure to UV-cm which not instantly germicidal, will dimerize thyamine in the DNA chain, rendering bacteria unable to reproduce. Additionally, while heat aids the growth of bacteria, it only does so in a moist environment, dessication (the removal of intersticial water) being a bactericidal method. Consider beef jerky as an example. In summary, while a good wash off with soap and water will do just fine, exposure to direct sunlight will increase bactericidal and viricidal effects.

Use a glass or good quality plastic chopping board for meat, fish, poultry, etc. Wooden boards will never be as clean, since the grain traps food particles.

Thin disposable plastic boards are also available. Depending on how you you use them they last a month or more. These have the advantage of being able to bend, so that you can half roll the board when putting the food in the pot.

2009-01-16 10:44:26
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