The Big Bang Fair unveils high rates of 'Human Hoovers' in UK

Germ scientists from The Big Bang Fair reveal extreme ‘Human Hoover’ behaviour in the UK with 4 in 5 (79%) Brits admitting to eating food that’s fallen on the floor.

The research revealed that more than half of us (56%) think it’s acceptable to eat food off our own kitchen floors with that number dropping (17%) if eating it off of other people’s floors.

People are just as likely to serve food that’s fallen on the floor to their dog (18%) as they are their partner (17%) and nearly one in five (17%) would give food to their child to stop them crying.

The most radical examples of ‘hoovers’ include people eating snacks off the floor of the cinema (2%) or public transport (1%).

When asked to justify this behaviour, a fifth (21%) of people admitted to adopting the well-known ‘five-second rule’, which scientists from the Big Bang Fair have revealed as legitimate and safe in most cases.

Germ expert, Professor Anthony Hilton from Aston University, will be demonstrating how germs work at The Big Bang Fair, which opens today. He commented:

“Eating food that has spent a few moments on the floor can never be entirely risk free. Obviously, food covered in visible dirt shouldn’t be eaten, but as long as it’s not obviously contaminated, the science shows that food is unlikely to have picked up harmful bacteria from a few seconds spent on an indoor floor.

“That is not to say that germs can’t transfer from the floor to the food. Our research has shown that the nature of the floor surface, the type of food dropped on the floor and the length of time it spends on the floor can all have an impact on the number that can transfer.”

The organisers of The Big Bang Fair hope the demonstrations such as those from Aston University will help young people realise how science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) is everywhere, including when it comes to the cleanliness of our food.

Paul Jackson, Chief Executive of EngineeringUK, organisers of The Big Bang Fair, said:

“This is a simple example of how science is present in everyday life. From testing how safe food is to inventing new food and drink, the limits of how we can apply science and engineering are endless.

“The Big Bang Fair gives young people the opportunity to discover the vast number of career opportunities available to them if they continue to study maths and science.”

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