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Ever wonder what bacteria are living on your kitchen surfaces, including sponges? It turns out that even with different hygiene, dietary habits, and cooking practices, there is a core group of bacteria that are common to all kitchen surfaces (core microbiota). At least this was true for residential kitchens in 5 European countries.

The Norwegian researchers took samples from 74 kitchens in 5 countries - France, Norway, Portugal, Romania, and Hungary. Bacteria were sampled from cutting boards, counter tops, sinks, handles, and cleaning utensils, including sponges.

The researchers found that the core microbiota in European kitchens were of eight genera or families.  They are: Acinetobacter, Pseudomonas, EnhydrobacterEnterobacteriaceaePsychrobacterChryseobacteriumBacillus, and Staphylococcus.

The researchers mention that other studies also found Acinetobacter (part of the core bacteria) in all kitchen samples in all countries (including USA, South Korea), and in high abundance. It probably enters kitchens daily because it is on vegetables, meat, fish, milk, and even in drinking water systems. By the way, these bacteria are not a threat to humans!

Bottom line: Bacteria are all around us, including in our kitchen - and that's OK. Most are harmless! However, harmful bacteria such as Salmonella can enter kitchens through contaminated food.

From Science Daily: Bacteria in kitchen may not be as harmful as you think

Bacteria found in 74 kitchens spread among 5 European countries were mostly harmless according to new research published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, a journal of the American Society for Microbiology. ...continue reading "Most Bacteria In Kitchens Are Harmless"