Cooking practices in the kitchen - observed versus predicted behaviour

E.D. van Asselt, A.R.H. Fischer, A.E.I. de Jong, M.J. Nauta, R. de Jonge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Cross-contamination and undercooking are major factors responsible for campylobacteriosis and as such should be incorporated in microbiological risk assessment. A previous paper by van Asselt et al.(1) quantified cross-contamination routes from chicken breast fillet via hand, cutting board, and knife ending up in a prepared chicken-curry salad in the domestic kitchen. The aim of the current article was to validate the obtained transfer rates with consumer data obtained by video observations and microbial analyses of a home prepared chicken-curry salad. Results showed a wide range of microbial contamination levels in the final salad, caused by various cross-contamination practices and heating times varying from 2'44" to 41'30". Model predictions indicated that cooking times should be at least 8 minutes and cutting boards need to be changed after cutting raw chicken in order to obtain safe bacterial levels in the final salad. The model predicted around 75% of the variance in cross-contamination behavior. Accuracy of the model can further be improved by including other cross-contamination routes besides hands, cutting boards, and knives. The model proved to be fail-safe, which implies it can be used as a worst-case estimate to assess the importance of cross-contamination in the home
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)533-540
JournalRisk Analysis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • campylobacter-jejuni infections
  • cross-contamination
  • food safety
  • domestic kitchen
  • risk-factors
  • hygiene
  • environment
  • survival
  • disease
  • hands

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