(Columbia) April 23, 2003 - Have you seen the new Saran Disposable Cutting Sheets? Saran claims when it comes to handling meat, fish or chicken, the sheets are much cleaner and easier to use than a cutting board.
Saran says in their ad, no kitchen is complete without them, "Look. Cut right on them, they soak up the juicy, germy mess." When you're done, you're supposed to just trash the sheet and the mess.
Testers sliced, diced and chopped through dozens of sheets to see if the claims would hold up in your kitchen.
Consumer Reports tester John Macchia found the sheets came up short as soon as he started quartering a 4-pound chicken, "The sheets are only 9 and half by 12 inches. They're too small for a whole chicken and the juices wind up on the counter."
There was another problem. The knife cut right through the sheets to the countertop. When John used the sheets to cut vegetables, he ran into the same problem. The knife sliced right through sheet after sheet.
The Saran Disposable Cutting Sheets just don't cut it. Macchia says you're better off with your regular cutting board, "Each cutting sheet costs about 20 cents. After using a real cutting board a few times, it should make up for the expense."
He says you have to be diligent about keeping your kitchen germ-free, "It's easy to forget to clean your cutting board, your knife or your hands after working with meat or chicken. Overlook any one of these and you can contaminate any other foods that youre working with."
Also, be sure to thoroughly wipe down the counter with a hot, soapy sponge. When you're done you need to get lingering bacteria off your sponge. You can do that by putting it in the microwave on high for 30 seconds or adding it to your next dishwasher load.