Moldy food can be a danger to human health, as many strains of the detrimental fungi feature mycotoxins that can cause adverse effects. Gastro-intestinal and urinary tract issues, and respiratory irritation are just some of the problems inhaling or ingesting mold can cause. To help you prevent mold on food, review what your Orange County mold inspectors want you to know.
Keep Food Refrigerated
Mold does not care for cool, crisp temperatures, as it generally prefers dark, damp or wet environments. Any soft, moist food, such as fruit, is especially susceptible to mold spores, so keep such items refrigerated until you eat them. If you have food that will not be consumed for some time, place the items in your freezer. The freezer is an even more “hostile environment” for mold. Allowing fruit and other soft, moisture-filled foods to remain outside of the refrigerator at room temperature makes them vulnerable to mold. Additionally, the sooner you consume food, the less chance there is for mold to develop.
Maintain Clean Kitchen Surfaces & Tools
While many mold strains love assorted foods, spores can be found throughout the kitchen. Countertops, cutting boards, knives, and other tools can feature mold spores if they are not cleaned regularly. White vinegar makes an excellent mold prevention liquid, as it cleans, disinfects, and kills spores on contact. Make a water-vinegar solution, such as ¼ cup of vinegar for every cup of water, to clean cutting boards and countertops on a consistent basis. For knives and other tools, wash them in your dishwasher, if applicable, or clean them in your sink using dish soap and hot water. You can also soak kitchen tools and cutting boards in a white vinegar solution.
Have the Kitchen Ventilation System Checked
Your kitchen’s ventilation system should exhaust hot, damp air to the outdoors. If you suspect the system exhausts air anywhere in your home, such as the basement or attic, have it inspected and repaired for outdoor ventilation. A kitchen that remains damp from various cooking and baking activities provides an ideal environment for mold to thrive and attack fruits, vegetables, breads, deli meats, and other foods.