Recent events have caused more and more people to focus on keeping their homes germ-free. Because it sits at the center of food preparation, the kitchen is a primary concern when it comes to cleanliness. While sanitary habits can cut down on cross-contamination between surfaces and food, the surfaces themselves also play a key role.
“Anything that touches food can become a source of contamination and potential foodborne illness,” said Zach Morrow, President of Rock Solid Custom Granite in Colorado. “If you cut up raw chicken, for instance, and then use the same cutting board to dice a tomato for your salad, you can transfer pathogenic bacteria from the chicken to the tomato.”
In general, the more porous a surface, the more likely it is to harbor potentially harmful microorganisms. Even vigorous scrubbing may leave behind trapped microscopic particles that could potentially find their way into food. This is one reason why more and more people are choosing nonporous cutting boards for food prep.
Unfortunately, the problem of cross-contamination isn’t limited to cutting boards. Certain countertop materials are more prone to trapping microorganisms, while others are especially good at keeping them out.
“Unlike even some of the most durable natural stone products, quartz countertops are nonporous because they are partially manmade,” said Morrow. “This means they require no sealing and resist the growth of microorganisms, offering a 99.9% sanitary surface with no additional treatments.”
In addition to harmful bacteria, contaminated food prep areas play a big role in the spread of norovirus; and the type of countertop you have plays a huge role in prevention. The cause of “stomach flu,” norovirus has become a seasonal scourge throughout most of the country.
“If someone sets their phone on the counter, they can end up spreading norovirus or E. Coli,” said Morrow. “Unfortunately, unchecked bacteria can multiply very fast on porous surfaces.”
Just because you wiped down your porous kitchen countertop with bleach doesn’t mean you got every single last microbe. That one E. Coli bacterium caught in a microscopic crevice can turn into millions in a matter of hours. Fortunately, quartz countertops can significantly reduce the risk of bacterial proliferation, especially if you choose the right product.
“In addition to being nonporous, Silestone quartz countertops have antimicrobial agents baked into them,” said Morrow. “The antimicrobial agents can kill bacteria before it has a chance to spread. For homeowners who are worried about food safety, Silestone quartz products are an ideal fit.”
Called Microban, Silestone’s trademarked antimicrobial compound is mixed into the resin and quartz goop, making it an actual part of the structure. The compound helps to fight the buildup of pathogenic microorganisms. You still have to clean the surface, but it does provide extra protection and makes the surface much easier to sterilize.
In addition to being nonporous, quartz countertops are so durable, many come with manufacturer warranties, an uncommon feature among natural stone countertops, including granite. Because they are man-made, quartz countertops can also be manufactured in a diverse range of styles and colors. While natural stone can be hard to match throughout a home; quartz countertops are much more customizable, allowing them to seamlessly complement the existing look of a home.
Because quartz is an abundant material, it has a lower environmental impact and requires less fuel to manufacture and transport. It’s also very durable, allowing it to outlast other surfaces in a home without diminishing in appearance.
Several brands of quartz kitchen and bathroom counters have also been GreenGuard certified as low-emitting products for improved indoor air quality. Because it is nonporous, quartz does not require the use of harsh, manmade chemical sealants to maintain its desired properties.
About Rock Solid Custom Granite
Rock Solid Custom Granite provides premium-quality natural stone countertops and custom cabinetry for businesses and homeowners throughout Colorado and the Denver metro area.
Placing customer satisfaction above all else, Rock Solid has gained a lasting reputation for being the area’s most reliable granite counters company. With the region’s widest selection of natural stone countertops, our skilled designers and installers specialize in elevating a home’s aesthetic and functionality. When they decide to work with our team of skilled experts, homeowners can expect the finest materials and best workmanship, guaranteed.