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Showing posts from February, 2018

Q: Can I use Norwex ™microfiber cloths for sanitizing food contact surfaces?

A: Manufacturers claim the Norwex™ cloth ‘self-purifies' because of the antibacterial silver embedded into the cloth. The silver in the microfiber cloth does not clean the surface but is embedded in the cloth to inactivate the bacteria and virus picked up by the cloth. But does it work? A microbiologist did independent testing on Norwex®, e-cloth®, Pollycloth™ cloths and found there was live bacteria on all cloths after 27.5 hours.  Heat or chemicals are two valid methods to sanitize food contact surfaces effectively. Ohio State University has information on using inexpensive household food-safe products like chlorine bleach, vinegar and hydrogen peroxide to sanitize. 

Q: What is a jelmeter?

A: A jelmeter is a glass tube with openings at each end. It is designed to estimate the amount of pectin in fruit juice and how much sugar you should add to from a gel. It is rarely used to today. Alcohol test, cooking test, thermometers and spoon sheet tests have replaced the jelmeter. 

Q: Can I add cooked bacon to my BBQ sauce?

A: Generally meats are not allowed ie. pork chops, hamburgers, jerky, etc. However, the statute references potentially hazardous foods in the Minnesota Food code and there is an exception--commercially prepared shelf stable bacon is not potentially hazardous because the pH or water activity puts cooked bacon into a non potentially hazardous status. Adding cooked bacon from a commercial source (not homemade bacon) in a BBQ sauce would be allowed.  The BBQ sauce must consist of less than 2% by weight of cooked bacon. The finished product must meet the non-potentially hazardous parameters of: a pH less than or equal to 4.6 or water activity less than or equal to 0.85.