In the kitchen, I am very health conscious and try to prepare and store foods with care

After working with a whole chicken, I usually wash the chopping board and knife with hot (but not boiling) soapy water (in particular, the dish soap I use is Fairy Liquid)

But, is this actually sufficient in killing all the unwanted germs and/or bacteria? I've seen maybe 1 article and people on forums stating that you should use bleach instead - is this necessary?

1 Answer 1


This question addresses whether or not soap kills "germs". The answer to your question has more to do with how pathogen free you really need to be. Firstly, knowledge about where your chicken comes from and how it was processed helps. Indeed, bleach or other kitchen approved sanitizers designed for commercial kitchen use are effective at eliminating bacteria. The question is, to what degree do you really need to take this in your own kitchen? I think personal comfort levels and needs vary for the home cook. For me, cleaning hands, tools and surfaces with hot soapy water does the job. I've never had a problem. However, I could see instances where one might want to be even more careful. For example, if a family member or guest had a compromised immune system one might want to play it extra safe.

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    The FDA doesn't mention anything beyond washing in their basic food handling guidance so I think you have to be pretty immune-compromised or pretty paranoid to consider using bleach. They do mention sanitizing countertops with bleach periodically in this advice for "moms-to-be", but I think that's more just about the fact that you don't wash them all the time and hot soapy water and rinsing is hard to do well on a counter.
    – Cascabel
    Commented Oct 17, 2017 at 23:22

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