Name and shame: Aussies have clean homes; dirty hands

Doug is on his way to Australia, Amy is already there and I’m shaking hands with Aussie friends in Milwaukee (at the International Association for Food Protection annual meeting). I hope we don’t catch anything: according to the Melbourne Herald Sun, Aussies are amongst the dirtiest in the world.

[Australians] rank below South Africa, Brazil, France, Britain, the US and Canada when it comes to personal hygiene habits, such as hand washing, in a Hygiene Council study of 12 countries.

It found well-mannered individuals were more hygienic and more than twice as likely to report less cases of colds, flu and diarrhoea.
Hygiene Council chairman Professor John Oxford said washing hands was a simple act that could help lower infectious illnesses.
"The study shows the correlation between personal hygiene and infectious disease, and only further establishes the importance of good hygiene habits to maintain good health," Prof Oxford said.

Brazilians had the highest level of personal hygiene and people in India and Malaysia were the highest users of anti-bacterial soap.

Australia shared top spot with Britain for household hygiene.


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About Ben Chapman

Dr. Ben Chapman is a professor and food safety extension specialist at North Carolina State University. As a teenager, a Saturday afternoon viewing of the classic cable movie, Outbreak, sparked his interest in pathogens and public health. With the goal of less foodborne illness, his group designs, implements, and evaluates food safety strategies, messages, and media from farm-to-fork. Through reality-based research, Chapman investigates behaviors and creates interventions aimed at amateur and professional food handlers, managers, and organizational decision-makers; the gate keepers of safe food. Ben co-hosts a biweekly podcast called Food Safety Talk and tries to further engage folks online through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and, maybe not surprisingly, Pinterest. Follow on Twitter @benjaminchapman.