Do I really need to use separate cutting boards?

Do I really need to use separate cutting boards? - Coborn's Food Safety Coordinator, Kim

As you’re strolling through the stores this holiday season searching for the perfect gift for that foodie friend you may be running across the colored set of cutting boards. And then you stop and ask yourself is this truly something that would be useful in the kitchen?  Or necessary?  The answer truly could go both ways. The ultimate goal of the separate cutting boards is to reduce even further the risk of cross-contamination in one’s kitchen. Even commercial kitchens use these to prevent cross-contamination.  Effective cleaning will go a long way in reducing that contamination risk; however, food safety is all about building multiple barriers in your food handling processes.  Colored, even just separate cutting boards, are a good option in providing that extra barrier… so when you’re working with chicken, the yellow cutting board is used and the red one for red meat, green for produce and so on.

So whether you opt for the colored cutting board set or decide to pass stating one cutting board is enough just remember that cleaning is ultimately still very important regardless of the choice. Just by choosing colored cutting boards doesn’t mean that it’s a free pass to put them away in less than a sanitary condition. It might be worthwhile to also invest in a scrub brush. No not the vegetable and fruit brush that you use for cleaning produce but a dedicated brush for cleaning surfaces! We all know and have experienced that even with the very first use of that new cutting board there already cuts and marks in them.  It is critical that those get cleaned out well as they can be harborage areas for bacteria. It’s also important to remember that if you’re cutting boards get excessively marred and cut up it’s good to throw them away and replace them with new ones. It could become your annual holiday gift to yourself or your foodie friend. Happy holidays!


Coborn’s, Inc. Food Safety and Nutrition Manager


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