The Timaru Herald: Bacteria – we’re covered in it

Charley Mann writes in the Timaru Herald about the bacteria which cover all of our surfaces and which, according to a US expert, we should be trying harder to control.

According to his research, environmental microbiologist Charles Gerba says that the average Kiwi office deskis covered by 200 times more bacteria than a toilet seat.  Charley Mann, however, upon taking swabs of his surroundings, found that the bacteria on his surfaces were all of the perfectly harmless kind.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“But swabs from my coffee cup, keyboard and desk showed that the only bacteria lurking were the friendly kind, with 20 bacteria per swab from both the desk and keyboard and 50 from the coffee cup.

“Grant Cook, a scientist of common microbiology at Timaru’s Medlab, said the results were exactly what he expected.

“”I would be surprised if you found any awful bacteria [on those surfaces],” Mr Cook said.

“”They all look like bacteria that grow on your skin and won’t cause harm.” Germ-free environments are few and far between, in fact “everyone is covered in bacteria and don’t realise it”.”