T/F Quiz: Shopping Carts

A new study into the hygiene of supermarkets has found that shopping carts are dirtier than the store’s bathrooms. Microbiologist Dr. Charles Gerba of the University of Arizona conducted research on the handles of 85 carts in four American states. He reportedly found bacteria from human waste (poop) on the handles of 72 per cent of them. "That's more than you find in a supermarket's toilet," Dr Gerba said. He explained: "That's because stores use disinfecting cleaners in the restrooms. Nobody seems to routinely clean and disinfect shopping carts." Further, half of the carts in Dr Gerba’s study tested positive for E. coli bacteria, a nasty germ that can cause diarrhea, vomiting and serious infection.

Professor Gerba is known as “Dr Germ” because of the number of studies he has done on bacteria and everyday objects. His previous studies warned of bacteria on reusable shopping bags, airplane seat-back trays, ground-floor elevator buttons, water fountain toggles, computer keyboards, iPads and playground equipment. He said just about anything touched by children has a high chance of contamination. He advised people to wash reusable shopping bags after use, otherwise they’ll become full of “bacterial swamps”. He added: “It’s like wearing the same underwear every day.” Gerba said the best way to avoid getting sick from shopping trolleys is to wipe the handle with a disinfectant cloth and wash your hands often.

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