These are the top 7 dirtiest areas of your local supermarket 50



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We know the world is full of germs but there’s one place we go all the time that might not register in our minds as a place to worry about bacteria: the supermarket.

Supermarkets look very clean – everything is packaged up and organised, however there are a lot of germ hotspots around the store that you may not have realised, or wanted to admit.

The fact of the matter is that hundreds of people every day are in those same aisles! So, what should we be aware of when we next to grocery shop?

Here are the top five germ spots:

1. The conveyor belt

Do you leave your fruit and veg outside the plastic slips? The conveyor could be a breeding ground for germs.

A study by the International Association of Food Protection showed that yeast, mould, staph, and coliform live and grow on the belts, and a study by Michigan State University found bacteria on 100 per cent of belts tested.

After using the conveyor belt, be sure to sanitise your hands and also any fruit or veg that were placed directly on it.

2. Eftpos machines

Most of us are guilty of doing this: we pay for our groceries and use the Eftpos machine, then 20 minutes later we’ll touch our face or bite our nails.

A study by microbiologist Richard Hastings claimed through a swabbing experiment that pin pads were dirtier than public toilets.

3. Fruit and vegetables

Again, think twice before eat those fruit and veges – many people will touch multiple items before they find the perfect one.

4. The trolley

This is a bit of an obvious one but many shoppers don’t wipe down the trolley before holding on. Some supermarkets now have wipes when you enter so you can do this. They are often the dirtiest parts of the whole supermarket experience.

5. Raw meat packaging

Ever picked up a packet of meat only to have it leak over you and the other packages? A UK survey found 40 per cent of chicken packs in supermarkets showed bacteria on the outsides of the packaging. Remember to give them a wipe and wash your hands after touching.

Share your thoughts below.

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. For goodness sake, wash your hands and items before use. Germs are everywhere and we also need to build up resistance. Get a life! We made it so far! Commonsense please!

    1 REPLY
    • Totally agree, Jacqueline! I’ve never heard anything so ridiculous! Disinfecting your hands after you’ve been through the checkout, and disinfecting your fruit and veg? How have we managed to survive for thousands of years?

  2. This did not happen in the supermarket it happened in Kmart, I wittnessed a young woman wiping her child’s very runny nose on a dress she picked out of the rack, she then put it back on the rack, I informed the help desk and they removed the item but they told me it happens all the time, cold and flu spred easily on contact, check every item before you buy it

    10 REPLY
  3. I also try not to take fruit/ vegs from lower on the shelves. Have watched young children sitting in trolleys touching the items as they are within their reach while mum selecting her items to buy she is not watching what child is doing.

  4. Well,last week I was shopping at a fruit and veg. outlet when we saw an elderly gent using an empty box behind a shelf as his toilet(no 2) . Thought he might have dementia,but then he drove off in car. Told staff. Needless to say won’t be going back there.

    2 REPLY
    • No,Melbourne. No joke,he proceeded to touch fruit,bought what he wanted then left. Think owners weren’t game to ask him to leave as one of the workers saw him too.

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