Why Using Separate Cutting Boards for Meat and Produce is Important

Why Using Separate Cutting Boards for Meat and Produce is Important

April 25, 2018

separate cutting boards, cutting board safety, butcher block boards, cross-contamination

Everyone uses cutting boards regularly in their kitchens yet, unfortunately, not many people are aware of the fact that they need to have separate cutting boards for different food. The general impression people get is that butcher block boards belong only in deli or restaurant kitchens. The simple rule of thumb is to have one board for meat-related products and another for produce, such as fruit and vegetables. This is why we have composed this article, to tell you in detail about the adverse effects of using a single cutting board for multiple purposes. You will also learn simple tips and techniques to keep yourself and your family safe from food-related diseases.

Why use separate cutting boards?

You probably already wash your hands and cutting surfaces thoroughly before and after doing any chopping or slicing. However, did you know that you may still be spreading bacteria? The reason for this is that raw red meat, seafood, poultry and eggs can spread bacteria to other foods even after washing. Cutting boards and butcher block boards alike tend to nurture bacteria in their tiny pores even after they have been washed properly. Therefore, if you’re chopping anything like cheese, vegetables or fruit on the same surface afterwards, the bacteria can easily be transferred. This is also known as cross-contamination. To avoid this method of spreading disease-causing bacteria, using separate cutting boards is the best way to reduce the chance of getting sick.

How meat and produce are cut

The way meat is cut depends on the purpose of its use. Whatever method you may be using, remember that when raw meat is cut, juices excrete from it. These liquids tend to seep into the surface of which they are cut on. On the other hand, preparing produce on cutting boards is simple. Whatever crumbs or liquids left on the board, is still edible. Even if you touch it with your finger and put that finger straight into your mouth, you wouldn’t be eating anything that may cause disease. This is the real reason why we need to separate the boards used for cutting meat and chopping produce.

Cutting Boards Safety

To prevent spreading bacteria and foodborne diseases, there are simple precautions that can be taken. These are:

  • Always keep meat, poultry, seafood and eggs separate from produce in your shopping cart. This is to prevent any juices that might escape their packaging and drip onto other food items.
  • When storing in the refrigerator and freezer, place meat and produce in their respected locations.
  • After chopping meat or seafood, wash your butcher block boards properly with soapy water. Regularly disinfect with diluted bleach or other sanitizing products.
  • When knife marks and cracks become prominent in your wood cutting boards, it’s best to replace them with new ones.

For more information, please check out our page on how to care and maintain a wood butcher block.

We hope that this information will encourage you to be more mindful in the future, when using cutting boards. Remember! Nothing is more important than good health. If you find yourself with only one cutting board, make sure to grab your very own butcher block from our online store. Visit us today and choose from our different models and types!