Help Prevent Norovirus Outbreaks in the Food Service Industry


The Norovirus is commonly associated with wide-spread illness that occurs on cruise ships, but those account for only about 1% of all reported norovirus outbreaks. Recent news of Norovirus affecting a popular restaurant chain confirms that it can occur anywhere people gather or food is served.  Infected people can spread norovirus to others through close contact or by contaminating food and surfaces. Food service workers who have the norovirus can contaminate food and make many people sick. However, there are ways to help prevent norovirus outbreaks in the food service industry such as following food service safety practices like proper barrier protection and hygiene policies.

A Boston-area Chipotle has been shut down temporarily after an employee was diagnosed with norovirus and two others reported similar symptoms,CBS Boston reports.

News such as this highlights the facts that the Norovirus, is highly contagious – often spread by infected food service workers – and immediate action should be taken to help prevent norovirus outbreaks in the food service industry.

Consider these Norovirus statistics from The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

Help-Prevent-Norovirus-Outbreaks-in-the-Food-Service-IndustryAbout 20 million people get sick from norovirus each year

Help-Prevent-Norovirus-Outbreaks-in-the-Food-Service-Industry#1 cause of outbreaks from contaminated food in the US.

Help-Prevent-Norovirus-Outbreaks-in-the-Food-Service-IndustryInfected food workers cause about 70% of reported outbreaks

Norovirus outbreaks from contaminated food are common in the food service industry because food service industry workers often go to work when they are sick and may contaminate food.  Of outbreaks caused by infected food workers, 54% involve food workers touching ready-to-eat-foods with their bare hands. Ready-to-eat foods are foods that are ready to be served without additional preparation, such as washed raw fruits and vegetables for salads or sandwiches, baked goods, or items that have already been cooked.

Observations of food service workers have shown that they practice proper hand washing only 1 in 4 times.

Norovirus is hard to kill and stays on food, kitchen surfaces, and utensils. It can remain infectious on foods even at freezing temperatures and until heated above 140°F and can stay on countertops and serving utensils for up to 2 weeks.  Norovirus can also be resistant to many common disinfectants and hand sanitizers.

What can be done to help prevent norovirus outbreaks in the food service industry?

Food service industry can

  • Adhere to food safety laws and regulations.
  • Certify kitchen managers and train food service workers in food safety practices.
  • Establish policies that require workers to stay home while sick with vomiting and diarrhea for at least 48 hours after symptoms stop.
  • Foster a work environment that encourages workers to stay home when sick, by considering such measures such as paid sick leave and a staffing plan that includes on-call workers.

Food service workers can

  • Tell a manager when sick with symptoms of norovirus such as vomiting and diarrhea.
  • Wash hands carefully and often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the restroom.
  • Use single-use disposable gloves to avoid touching ready-to-eat foods with bare hands.
  • Regularly clean and sanitize kitchen surfaces and frequently touched objects, using a chlorine based product or other sanitizer approved by the Environmental Protection Agency for use against norovirus.
  • Immediately block off, clean, and disinfect areas where there has been a vomiting or diarrheal incident.
  • Carefully wash fruits and vegetables and avoid serving undercooked (below 140°F) oysters and other shellfish.
  • Visit www.FoodSafety.gov for the latest information.

Due to the nature of the food service industry – where workers directly handle food  – disposable glove usage in this sector is common. The U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) requires all employees to wash their hands if they make contact with food. However, when it comes to the prevention of norovirus, food service disposable gloves are the most effective barrier protection according to the CDC – it helps to prevent the spread of the norovirus.

The CDC strongly recommends food workers use disposable gloves to avoid touching food with bare hands.

Food service disposable gloves, such as polyethylene gloves commonly referred to as poly gloves are a popular choice in the food service industry.  Disposable poly gloves such as, AMMEX Poly are ideal for food service since they are single-use and workers tend to switch between various light-duty tasks, and they need a disposable glove that can accommodate their workflow.

Another popular single-use disposable glove for food service is polyvinyl chloride (PVC), also known as vinyl.  Disposable gloves such as AMMEX AntiMicrobial Vinyl are single use, FDA approved for food service and they contain an antimicrobial agent to help inhibit the growth of microorganisms.

Regardless of which disposable gloves food service workers use, poly, vinyl, and latex disposable gloves are a smart investment for the food service industry.  Food service disposable gloves can help prevent norovirus outbreaks in the food service industry – protecting workers and consumers against foodborne illness – And helps to protect businesses against tarnished reputations and decreased profits when restaurants have to close due to outbreaks.  Thousands of distributors rely on AMMEX to supply their customers in the food service industry with high-quality AMMEX disposable gloves. Contact us today to become an AMMEX distributor and learn how we help our distributors grow their glove sales on average of 31%!

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Best Disposable Gloves for the Automotive Industry


In heavy-duty environments, such as the automotive industry, only the toughest gloves will do. The automotive industry works with a variety of chemical based fluids, they handle sharp and dangerous parts and tools, and they need to be able to handle all of these things with precision. These tough jobs require workers to wear heavy duty gloves that work as hard as they do!  Here’s Best Disposable Gloves for the Automotive Industry.

As an automotive mechanic or worker in the industry, you are likely looking for three main benefits in your gloves.
1. Puncture resistance
2. Chemical protection
3. High level of dexterity

“With so many types of glove materials on the market, it is vital that you choose the best disposable gloves for the automotive industry.”

Best Disposable Gloves for the Automotive Industry

So, what are the best gloves for the automotive industry and what type of glove can provide a solution to all three of these demands? Nitrile and Heavy duty latex gloves are ideal for the automotive industry because they satisfy the many needs of automotive workers.

Technicians need gloves that have a longer duration of use, raised textures for an enhanced grip and a high level of dexterity to deliver precision. Nitrile and heavy duty latex gloves are the best choice because of their chemical protection, puncture resistance and comfort. In the automotive industry, these gloves have proven to be superior because they satisfy the three, heavy duty needs of automotive industry workers:

Puncture Resistance:
Since nitrile is a synthetic rubber, it is inherently three to five times more durable and puncture resistant than its latex counterpart. This is an important safety security for automotive mechanics as they work with many sharp objects and tools.  AMMEX nitrile gloves are 50 percent thicker than standard nitrile gloves, with three times the puncture resistance of latex. As a result, these gloves are tougher, last longer and require fewer glove changes. On the other hand, heavy duty latex gloves feature more elasticity than nitrile and have better puncture resistance than vinyl.

Chemical Protection:
Because nitrile is a synthetic rubber that is built with three chemical monomers, the material is strong and resistant to outside chemicals, like the ones that mechanics come in contact with on a daily basis. Nitrile and heavy duty latex gloves have high resistance to many chemicals, such as iodine and butane, making them ideal for automotive technicians and other workers who deal with chemicals regularly.

“The automotive industry relies on tough gloves with optimum dexterity.”

Dexterity:
The automotive industry relies on tough gloves with optimum dexterity. Heavy duty latex has greater elasticity than nitrile, providing more comfort in harsh environments and features more elasticity than nitrile; however, nitrile is flexible and will conform to the users hand after extended use, which provides a very high level of precision and dexterity that is needed in an automotive application.  Workers in the automotive industry rely on our superior line of nitrile and heavy duty latex gloves such as Gloveworks® Heavy Duty Orange Nitrile GlovesGlovePlus® Black Nitrile Gloves and our Gloveworks® Heavy Duty Latex Gloves for the toughest applications.

Which AMMEX glove is right for you?
Our Gloveworks Heavy Duty Latex Glove is an industrial grade glove that is more than twice as thick as a standard disposable latex glove. With enhanced puncture resistance, each glove has a longer duration of use so you don’t have to switch gloves as often during tough jobs. Latex gloves feature more elasticity than nitrile, and better puncture resistance than vinyl. The textured surface of the glove will give you an enhanced grip in wet and dry conditions. It’s also powder free, so you don’t have to worry about messy powder residue.

In automotive applications, it is key to note that a powder-free glove is used more frequently versus the powdered version. Although the powder inside gloves makes them easier to don and doff, the powder can be detrimental to certain automotive related applications. When the powder particles from the gloves become air borne, they can harm vehicle paints and sealants, and particularly the powder can affect the seal on windshields causing leakage into the car.

If latex allergies are of concern, nitrile gloves are an excellent option. Gloveworks Heavy Duty Orange Nitrile Gloves, are latex free and hold up to longer use with three times the puncture resistance of latex.  Orange nitrile gloves do not just look unique; the color stands out so you are more aware of where you hands are at all times, making them an excellent part of a personal protective equipment (PPE) or high-visibility program. The contrast of the color with dark environments makes workers less likely to be injured. The bright orange stands out against dim work areas, such as industrial environments, garages and under the hoods of vehicles.

Another premium option for the automotive industry is GlovePlus Black Nitrile Gloves. These nitrile gloves, have all the benefits of regular nitrile , including conforming closely to the hand when they reach body temperature for a more comfortable fit. The gloves are polymer coated to make them easier to don, and feature a beaded cuff. These gloves are the perfect balance of better dexterity and better protection.

When it comes to color options, AMMEX offers orange nitrile gloves, black nitrile gloves, and blue nitrile gloves, and when it comes to style options, we have extra thick and extra long nitrile gloves as well.  To add nitrile gloves or heavy duty latex gloves to your line up contact us online or contact your AMMEX Representative.  Or, maybe it’s time to take a different approach this year.  Let AMMEX be the change that accelerates your business growth for 2016.  Interested in growing your business for the new year?   Become an AMMEX distributor today!

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