Wednesday, July 9, 2014

You Cannot Bleach Your Way to Clean

I just had yet another question about the concentration of a chlorine bleach solution to use soaking calf feeding equipment. The assumption is that if the one uses the proper concentration of the active ingredient somehow the tube feeders and bottles will become clean. All the bacteria will be gone. 


There are two resources at that shed light on this issue. The first is "Bleach is Not Enough to Kill Bacteria" - click HERE to access the text. This note explains why bleach is ineffective in situations where there is significant biofilm accumulation.

The second is "Biofilms Threaten Calf Health" - click Biofilms to access the text. This note includes the topics
  • What are biofilms 
  • Why are they a threat to calf health 
  •  How do biofilms get started 
  •  How do biofilms grow 
  •  What can we do about biofilms
So, the bottomline? Soaking equipment in a bleach solution when there are biofilms present is simply an exercise - you are not killing the bacteria.

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