At the recent meeting of the Good Germs project, the participants drew up a shortlist of possible microbial mapping experiments for the coming months. The list included mapping: the microbial signatures of their pets, the microbes in their food, those radiating from compost caddies or on kitchen utensils and food containers, as well as mapping the microbes in their fridges. This week we've had an online vote, and the fridge mapping experiment has won.
So, the next round of microbial mapping is going to explore "fridge ecologies". Each of our participant households is going to swab the inside of their fridges. Then they are going to swab four different food items, straight from the shopping bag or allotment basket, before they put them in the fridge. Some of these will be wrapped (and the packaging swabbed), others not wrapped (and the skins and surfaces swabbed). One week later, they will swab the inside of the fridges again. Watch this space to find out what happens!