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Does Double Dipping Spread Germs?

Some people become very concerned about bacterial contamination when they witness "double dipping," the practice of dipping a piece of food into a communal bowl of dip or sauce, taking a bite, then re-dipping the same piece of food. The risk of spreading germs through this practice is relatively minimal, however. Studies have shown that there might be a slight transfer of germs, but nothing that should actually spread disease. Still, double dipping is considered by most people to be bad etiquette.

More about communal food:

  • Although double-dipping poses a negligible health risk, leaving food out at room temperature for more than two hours does pose a health risk. Dips and other perishables should be swapped out every two hours. The reserves should be kept in a refrigerator until they are served.

  • Party hosts should prepare raw vegetables or salsa on cutting boards that are reserved for veggies. Raw meats should be kept entirely separate to avoid cross-contamination.

  • Double dipping might be bad etiquette, but calling out someone for it in front of other people might be even more rude. Someone who is concerned about germs could place a spoonful of dip on a plate and serve himself or herself from this separate, uncontaminated supply of dip.

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More Info: www.foodsafety.gov

Discuss this Article

Euroxati
Post 1

In my opinion, although double dipping is considered bad etiquette, and though there's always the possibility of spreading germs, I feel that people make a bigger deal out of it than is necessary.

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