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Using Alcohol Effectively Frequently Asked Questions

Using Alcohol Effectively

Alcohol boasts a number of superior qualities that can come in handy in a variety of every day applications. In this section, we will introduce some of our most useful tips on a seasonal basis. Don’t miss out!

Spring Tip "Congratulations on Starting a New School Year !"
Once again congratulations go out to all the students who started classes this spring at a new junior or senior high school. Depending on your school, you may have to bring your own lunch box (obento). With this thought in mind, we would like to offer the following tips regarding alcohol use as they apply to school lunch boxes.

+ Preparing Food for your Lunch Box
First and foremost thoroughly wash your hands before handling food. Feel free to lightly spray cutting boards or other cooking utensils with alcohol for disinfection after use. If you lightly wipe the inside of the lunchbox with alcohol, the contents will remain fresher for longer.

+ Lunch Box Odors
Alcohol comes in handy for those who hate lunch box odors! Soak a paper towel with alcohol and thoroughly wipe both the inside and outside of the lunch box. This will help to remove leftover food particles from indentations and hard to reach places. To clean the lining and outer lid, wrap a small wool cloth around a long skewer and dip it in alcohol and wipe the lunch box clean.

+ Cleaning Up after Cooking Fish
There are probably many of you out there who really want to include fish in the lunch menu, but don’t like the resulting mess or pungent odor. No need to worry, alcohol comes to the rescue! After grilling the fish, dispose of the water at the bottom of the grill and wipe dry with a piece of paper. Next, add alcohol to a piece of paper and wipe once again. This will clean away the access oil and fat, as well as that pesky fishy odor. Repeat the process for the grill top.

+ Prevent odors from Kitchen Waste
Use alcohol to deodorize any kitchen waste resulting from your food preparations. Spray alcohol in the plastic garbage bag and close it tightly to deodorize the contents. Because alcohol has disinfecting qualities, it will also control the spread of various bacteria and germs. Spray alcohol in the plastic garbage can where you keep kitchen waste for an added effect and even more peace of mind.


Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find a selection of the most commonly asked questions regarding alcohol and our answers.

What is alcohol made from? / Is the alcohol used in alcoholic beverages different from j.alco's alcohol? / Can one become intoxicated by consuming food products that contain this type of alcohol? / I often hear the terms ethanol or "shusei". How are they different from alcohol? / What is pharmaceutical alcohol? / Where can I purchase rubbing alcohol for disinfection? / Is there anything I need to know about using alcohol? / Is it safe to use alcohol to clean baby toys? / Can alcohol cause skin irritation or roughness?

Q: What is alcohol made from?
A: Alcohol is made largely in two ways. The first method uses sugars from molasses or sugarcane and starches from corn, ocarina, and potatoes to produce "fermentative alcohol". In the second method, ethylene extracted from petroleum is used to make "synthetic alcohol". The Japan Alcohol Corporation manufactures and sells fermentative alcohol.

Q: Is the alcohol used in alcoholic beverages different from J.alco’s alcohol?
A: In terms of ingredients they are the same. However, alcohol used in beverages is defined as having alcohol content of over 1 proof (1v/v%) by Japan’s Alcohol Tax Law, which levies a tax on such alcohol. On the other hand, no alcohol tax is levied on alcohol produced by the Japan Alcohol Corporation because it is used in chemical industries (drugs, medicines, and cosmetics, etc.) and food products. The production of such alcohol is strictly controlled so that it is not consumed in beverage form.

Q: Can one become intoxicated by consuming food products that contain this type of alcohol?
A: Alcohol found in food products completely evaporates upon exposure to heat. As for sauces, such as soy sauce, that are not heated and sometimes directly consumed, the alcohol content will immediately evaporate once poured out of the container. Since the amount of alcohol included in these types of food products is extremely minute, there is no need to worry about becoming intoxicated from use as seasonings for cooking.

Q: I often hear the terms ethanol or "shusei". How are they different from alcohol?
A: Alcohol, ethanol, ethanol alcohol, and shusei, while the terminology is different, refer to the same thing. “Ethanol” is a recognized term of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, while “ethanol alcohol” is a common expression of this term. On the other hand, shusei simply means ethanol in Japanese.

Q: What is pharmaceutical alcohol?
A: This term refers to alcohol used at hospitals to prevent the spread of bacteria, and in medicines. Pharmaceutical alcohol refers to alcohol that meets the Japanese government’s standard for this product. This is in turn separated into three categories based on alcohol concentration: (1) Absolute Ethanol (99v/v%); (2) Ethanol (95v/v%); (3) Disinfecting Ethanol (Approx. 80v/v%). In terms of household use, the most widely used type is disinfecting ethanol.

Q: Where can I purchase rubbing alcohol for disinfection?
A: You can find rubbing alcohol at your local drug store or pharmacy. Ask for disinfecting ethanol.

Q: Is there anything I need to know about using alcohol?
A: Never use alcohol near an open flame or source of heat as it is flammable and has the potential to combust. An alcohol-related fire can be extinguished by spraying or dumping water over it. Whenever storing alcohol, make sure the lid of the container is tightly fastened to prevent evaporation, and store in a dark and cool place. Needless to say, it is also important to store alcohol away from places easily accessible to children.

Q: Is it safe to use alcohol to clean baby toys?
A: Since it has disinfecting and antibiotic properties, alcohol can be used to clean and disinfect pacifiers, rattles, and blocks or other toys that infants have direct contact with. Ingredient wise, certain alcohols can be exposed to the mouth without causing harm. However, so that your baby does not directly consume alcohol, dab only a small amount onto a piece of tissue paper when wiping baby toys clean.

Q: Can alcohol cause skin irritation or roughness?
A: If alcohol is used for normal, everyday cleaning purposes than there should be nothing to worry about. For those concerned with possible skin irritation, we suggest using a hand cream to moisten your skin after direct contact. For people with sensitive skin or open wounds on their hands, we recommend that the user wear rubber gloves to avoid further irritation. Additionally, if you are using alcohol for cleaning purposes over long periods, we advise that the user wear rubber gloves.