E. coli O157:H7 is spread by contact with infected fecal matter, which happens quite regularly. According to the Centers for Disease Control, everyone has some risk of infection from this bacterium
This bacterium has been responsible for numerous food recalls, illnesses and deaths. Exposure can cause severe stomach cramps, vomiting and kidney failure.
The data below demonstrates that copper actively kills E. coli O157:H7 while stainless steel and polyethylene, a common plastic, have virtually no effect after 360 minutes. As acknowledged by the U.S. EPA, Antimicrobial Copper kills more than 99.9% of E. coli O157:H7 within two hours.
Read more on the other bacteria that Antimicrobial Copper is registered to kill.
Copper and copper alloys are engineering materials that are durable, colourful and recyclable and are widely available in various product forms suitable for a range of manufacturing purposes. Copper and its alloys offer a suite of materials for designers of functional, sustainable and cost-effective products.
Some specific copper alloys have intrinsic antimicrobial properties (so-called ‘Antimicrobial Copper’) and products made from these materials have an additional, secondary benefit of contributing to hygienic design. Products made from Antimicrobial Copper are a supplement to, not a substitute for standard infection control practices. It is important that current hygiene practices are continued, including those related to the cleaning and disinfection of environmental surfaces.
*Laboratory testing shows that, when cleaned regularly, antimicrobial copper surfaces kill greater than 99.9% of the following bacteria within 2 hours of exposure: MRSA, VRE, Staphylococcus aureus, Enterobacter aerogenes, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and E. coli O157:H7. Antimicrobial copper surfaces are a supplement to and not a substitute for standard infection control practices and have been shown to reduce microbial contamination, but do not necessarily prevent cross contamination or infections; users must continue to follow all current infection control practices.