to complain to shop about ice cream cone??

(105 Posts)
Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:06:07

I went to a local ice cream shop yesterday, and really wanted my ice cream in a cone. I noted, however, that the serving staff were using their bare hands to pick up the cone, right after handling money - as i've seen sooo many times in the UK and europe.

I think it's absolutely disgusting, and whilst I have in the past politely asked if they could use a napkin to pick up mine (I apologised and said I was really fussy), this time I didn't want to upset anyone, just had mine in a cup, but then proceeded to write to the shop complaining.

I really don't think I am BU, but maybe I am? I don't understand why others don't complain??? Who can even guarantee that the staff wash their hands after using the loo???

ParadiseChick Sat 06-Jul-13 10:27:34

What would the alternative be?

catgirl1976 Sat 06-Jul-13 10:31:53


Good for you. smile

Think of them as tiny, extra sprinkles grin

Mrsrobertduvall Sat 06-Jul-13 10:32:22

Wear latex gloves? I've noticed that more and more.

But then what if you're allergic to latex.......

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:33:27

Use a napkin to pick up the cone, or one of those "cone sleeves"?

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:34:12

The problem with latex gloves, is that they're still likely to pick up the money wearing the gloves sad

WeAreEternal Sat 06-Jul-13 10:34:50

I would just ask them to use a napkin.

Although being that the cones sit out all day and you are touching it with your own hands, which will have handled money, I think you are being a little UR to write a letter of complaint.

PseudoBadger Sat 06-Jul-13 10:34:56

The ideal is to have separate people taking money and doing the service. Suggest that?

Montybojangles Sat 06-Jul-13 10:35:17

But you will have touched money when paying, right before you then hold and eat it won't you??

Mrsrobertduvall Sat 06-Jul-13 10:35:41

Have a lolly instead?

PinkSippyCup Sat 06-Jul-13 10:36:38

I hate this too OP! Puts me off buying ice cream, from ice cream vans, unless I get something in a cup/ wrapper.

It's gross and YANBU!

CaptainSweatPants Sat 06-Jul-13 10:37:38

'The ideal is to have separate people taking money and doing the service.'

No one minds in an ice Cream van that's there's just one man!

PinkSippyCup Sat 06-Jul-13 10:38:25

I mind Captain grin

PseudoBadger Sat 06-Jul-13 10:38:38

On the bright side, a waffle cone is not the ideal medium to permit the growth of bacteria. Unless you are washing your own hands in the seconds between handing over the money and receiving the cone YABU.

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:39:03

Pseudo you are absolutely right, and actually I know of a country where by law you're required to have different people serving and taking payment. Having said that I can see how it would be difficult for small businesses, so appreciate it may not always be possible!

Monty you're right, but I try to use one hand for money and another one for the cone if that was completely unavoidable. And, if they did use the napkin, then I could touch just the napkin too, and all would be solved grin

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:40:53

PinkSippy I am glad I'm not alone!!!

Although by the responses it does sound like most people don't really mind, so maybe IABU and will try not to mind too much, maybe I can bring myself to eat the cone next time...

PinkSippyCup Sat 06-Jul-13 10:43:06

I use a napkin.

Also I think touching money i.e one coin to pay with, then handling your own ice cream (although still a little gross!) is not the same has handling loads of money all day in between touching other people's food.

usualsuspect Sat 06-Jul-13 10:43:20

Do people really worry about this?

MN constantly throws up problems I've never even thought about.

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 10:44:52

Germs are good for you. Embrace them.

BlameClaimProfit Sat 06-Jul-13 10:46:34

OMG indirect human contact.

Demand compensation!

Montybojangles Sat 06-Jul-13 10:46:43

I buy my lunch (if I get a chance) on the run most days, so I'm pretty sure I've touched cash and then my sarnie with the same hand regularly. I don't appear to have come to harm yet.

I would just ask them politely to use a serviette to handle the cone if it's worrying you, I doubt they would upset by you asking.

PinkSippyCup Sat 06-Jul-13 10:47:56

Sorry last post!

I was once in an ice cream queue when someone asked about which cone size cost what. The ICM picked up a small and medium (full palm grip) and held them up. The lady in front of me complained grinand told him he should be wearing gloves.

I mean seriously who wants to eat a sweaty ice cream cone <boak>

Montybojangles Sat 06-Jul-13 10:48:17

grin Tee I lean to that way of thinking too. Though obviously wouldn't recommend rubbing a raw chicken or such against your cornetto

perplexedpirate Sat 06-Jul-13 10:49:18

I think this might be the firstest worldest problem evah!
Are we all keeling over after eating contaminated ice cream cones? No.
So it's fine.

Yonihadtoask Sat 06-Jul-13 10:49:26

I always throw away the cone. Agree that if is v unhygienic.

Write to the shop, I am sure there could be a way that they could serve without touching the actual cone. Must be some paper wrappers that could go around the cone?

NoComet Sat 06-Jul-13 10:51:20

Good grief, do people, really notice or care about things like this.

I only notice when people do wear gloves, our local shop does (blue non latex) and I just think what a faff and waste of money, resources.

Yes, being carefull as greggs and our local butchers are to have different staff doing pasties/cakes raw-meat/cold meats

But ice cream cones? I bet they don't worry about gloves unloading boxes and filling machines.

DeathByTray Sat 06-Jul-13 10:52:39

I am shock at this thread.

The world's gone mad.

It must be the heat. grin

carolthesecretary Sat 06-Jul-13 10:54:27

I've never even thought about this.

Buy a Cornetto if it bothers you that much.

<Wanders off to think about more important things like crisis in Egypt and third world debt>

PseudoBadger Sat 06-Jul-13 10:54:58

Gloves are pointless. You would have to change them in between every transaction and customer to achieve the desired effect.
In a higher- risk food business (sandwich prep etc) regular hand washing is the best thing, and someone taking money separately. Ice cream vans, not so much.

BlameClaimProfit Sat 06-Jul-13 10:56:01

Do you always check your OH washes his cock after going to the loo before you let it near you? I can imagine that kills the passion somewhat.

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 10:56:19

On my 44 years of ice-cream cone consumption <awards self badge> this has never entered my head as a concern.

As an aside, am I alone in thinking those blue gloves many food places now use to be weirdly creepy? I have a bigger issue with blue gloves than nekkid skin. Odd confused

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:56:24

I am actually quite surprised that people seem shocked about this! Perhaps I should get over it, I would love not to mind about this kind of stuff, it's just how I've been raised I suppose (my mum is super fussy about this kind of thing).

As a first exercise I am going to march up to the ice cream shop and eat the cone! <scared>

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 10:57:13

Blame, errrmmm....

DeathByTray Sat 06-Jul-13 10:59:52

TSS I'm not so keen on the blue gloves. Why are they coloured thus?
I can understand a plaster needing to be blue so it is highly visible if it fell into food but I'm sure you'd notice a glove!

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 11:01:00

Go Ginger, go Ginger!

Just brace, lick and shovel.

You can do it.

And think of all the trees you'll save from eschewing paper napkins.

<awards Ginger a badge too>

Bloody hell yadbu! This would never in a million years enter my head. I suggest just eating ice cream at home to save yourself the stress.

carolthesecretary Sat 06-Jul-13 11:02:09

I think hygiene standards are a lot higher than they were when my Mum was a kid. She's told me a few shockers.

I've always thought a bit of dirt and a few germs were good for you personally. I used to cut the mouldy bit off the bread when I was at uni (needs must and all that). I'm still here to tell the tale...

...although this is now all I'll be able to think about when getting an ice cream from now on. Noooooo!

LegArmpits Sat 06-Jul-13 11:03:40

usualsuspect me too. It wouldn't enter my tiny, worry-free mind. Sometimes my head feels like it's going to explode when I take on the extra woes of MN!

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 11:03:56

Death I have considered this. I think it's that they don't fit, so the hand/glove are all puckery and (favourite word alert) flaccid. I know I should be worried about Egypt and global population and stuff, but this is what I choose to worry about in a Pret line grin

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 11:04:58

Two by two hands of blue...

Mumsyblouse Sat 06-Jul-13 11:05:13

In all honesty, having worked in many restaurants and cafes, can I suggest you never ever eat out if you are that concerned about hygiene. You are only concerned about this because you can see it, but if you saw what goes on behind closed doors, it's a lot worse. Really, if you are that neurotic about germs (and I can't say I've ever had a stomach upset from an ice-cream or indeed eating out except once in 40 odd years) then eating food prepared outside your home is not for you.

Have just asked Ds as he has a summer job on an ice cream cart. The hand that holds the cornet doesn't actually hold money if you think about it. Using the example of a right handed person ,you hold the cornet in your left, you scoop with your right and then take the money/give change with your right so the hand holding cornet doesn't ever come into contact with money anyway.

halcyondays Sat 06-Jul-13 11:06:40

Most places now do seem to put a napkin around the cone.

catgirl1976 Sat 06-Jul-13 11:08:02

In Subway they always put on gloves to do sandwich, then take then off to do cash handling, bin them and put on a fresh pair

All that plastic shock sad

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 11:08:04

Ah Planet the voice of reason. MN can relax and go back to worrying about Egypt and the ever irreconcilable shoes on/shoes off debate.


BlameClaimProfit Sat 06-Jul-13 11:08:52

Do people wash their hands after handling cash? Bearing in mind some currency in circulation is over 30 years old who knows how many unwashed hands it has been in. probably been inside a few bodily orifices too.

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 11:10:48

Is a summer job on a ice cream van just about the best summer job ever?

DeathByTray Sat 06-Jul-13 11:11:04

Blame are you saying you keep your loose change in an orifice? shock

DeathByTray Sat 06-Jul-13 11:11:43

I could never work on an ice cream van in the summer - think of the WASPS!!

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 11:12:17

Blame you should make yourself known to the people behind you in the ice cream van queue.

ParadiseChick Sat 06-Jul-13 11:12:25

Someone somewhere along the line will!

when I worked for thornton's they were very strict on this.

plastic gloves and hold the cone in a napkin.

Remove gloves to handle cash and use cash register.

prettybird Sat 06-Jul-13 11:20:22

Omg. shock

How have I survived 52 years without ever even thinking to worry about this hmm?


I think as a society we are getting overly concerned about the potential for germs everywhere. We live surrounded by bacteria - some good, some bad. If you are continually disinfecting things, you can actually risk killing all the "good" ones and leaving the bad ones with no competition.

Some perspective about risk is required.

AugustaProdworthy Sat 06-Jul-13 11:22:11

how dangerous is money then? Is it riddled with germs??

BlameClaimProfit Sat 06-Jul-13 11:23:53

Just seems strange to me that people worry about someone's hands that have been unwashed for an hour or two but not about items that have been passed from person to person for 30 years having never been washed.

No wonder the landfills are well full if people need plastic gloves and napkins to touch anything that might be touched by anyone else. Always seems to be the obsessively clean people who are off sick all the time at work anyway.

quoteunquote Sat 06-Jul-13 11:25:10

One solution would to ask at the point of ordering if they could pick up two cones at once, and pay the 5p extra, that way you could slip off the outer one, and donate it to a passing dog.

wouldn't really worry me germs make you tough.

CajaDeLaMemoria Sat 06-Jul-13 11:28:41

Two points - There are paper cones that go around the cone, but they come stacked, so you have to touch the cone to separate them anyway. Makes them rather pointless.

Gloves are blue because current food safety guidance states that they must be, just like plasters, so that they/remnants of them is easily visible if they end up in someone's food.

VivaLeBeaver Sat 06-Jul-13 11:35:04

Ice creams, etc been handled by people who have handled money doesn't bother me.

However I have developed total OCD at McDonald's now. They've stopped using the paper on the tray....I guess to save money the environment.

So your food is put straight on a manky tray. I see the woman collecting the trays wiping them with a grubby cloth which she's been wiping tales, etc with.

It's fine for the burgers but when they put the fries down on their side half your fries are touching the tray.

I stood in the queue wondering whether to intercept the fries so I could stand them up or whether to cover the tray in napkins first. In the end I left and went to pizza express. I am turning into my mother!

MrsDeVere Sat 06-Jul-13 11:38:47

I was in Burger King once and this woman was being all loud about the staff not wearing gloves.
The staff were saying its no policy because they do not handle food and money etc and that they have strict hand washing policies.

She was saying 'yeah but look at him, he could have scratched his arse before he touched my food'.

Like scratching your arse with a gloved hand and then touching her food with the same gloved hand would have been ok.

Silly caahh.

Not you OP but I do think yabu. cos it don't bother me.

But if it is a 'thing' for you I can see why you are grossed out by you.

So maybe yanbu


TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 11:43:58

Damn you Viva now I want McD fries and ice cream.

Bless you for worrying more a about a germ on your fries than the effect of the fries in your arteries grin

<excellent notion: will get fries and a McFlurry to kill two birds>

DeathByTray Sat 06-Jul-13 11:48:40

Trays can be very dangerous wink

beals692 Sat 06-Jul-13 11:48:53

I read that one in four bank notes in the UK has faecal matter on it. I'd expect at a minimum they'd hold the cone with a napkin. YANBU - although I'd probably just ask them to use a napkin or get an icecream in a cup instead.

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 11:51:32

I totally never noticed the lack of paper on the trays at McDonalds and I was just there!

TSSDNCOP Sat 06-Jul-13 12:00:32

Tee you can forget about that trip to California then, you've had it grin

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 12:03:53



VivaLeBeaver Sat 06-Jul-13 12:42:50

Maybe some McDonald's aren't as bothered about saving money the environment as others?

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 12:50:24

Actually, if faecal matter was as dangerous as some people think it is, the human race would have died out 100000000 of years ago. It's everywhere.

GiveItYourBestShot Sat 06-Jul-13 12:59:13

YANBU! I abandoned a sandwich purchase after the counter girl swept the floor, emptied the rubbish into the bin and then picked up my sandwich without washing hands. I would wash hands if that was my kitchen. She gave me this face though hmm

Burmobasher Sat 06-Jul-13 13:22:28

If you think this is "absolutely disgusting" I do wonder how you manage to go about your daily business touching door handles, eating off plates using knives and forks in cafes etc.
do you have a stash of latex gloves to handle the cash which pays for the ice creams ?

Tabliope Sat 06-Jul-13 13:41:23

YANBU. I feel exactly the same but my love of oysters from the ice cream van makes me turn a blind eye to it. I've definitely got hygiene worries.

McNewPants2013 Sat 06-Jul-13 13:53:00

I have never thought about this.

Ick. I don't think I could eat it if they are not washing hands after handing food. Our local sandwich shop and pizza place both have a small sink with soap dispenser and paper towels behind the counter, you can see them wash their hands. If they come off the till they wash. So if it's busy, one person is on the till and the others handle food. If it's slow they do both and wash between customers.
Most bills tested are supposedly contaminated with e Coli and cocaine.,28804,1914560_1914558_1914544,00.html

Gingerandcocoa Sat 06-Jul-13 15:40:03

GiveIt I would definitely do the same...

I also must admit that in the very seldom times I eat at McDonald's or BK I always watch out for which fries touch the tray, and then throw those out..........

ivykaty44 Sat 06-Jul-13 15:48:17

do people really think that germs make them tough?

would you roll the ice cream cone around on the floor of the nearest lab before putting the ice cream in it and still be happy to eat it?

If the person serving washed their hands between sales then fine - but to not wash hands and handle money is vile, the money will have urine and other excreta on and then the hands will transfer that to the cone - then you eat the cone - for some of you that may be fine, but I don't want to eat it.

yet another thing that has never crossed my mind, honestly unless you live in a bubble you are going to come into contact with germs, I have never been sick after eating a cone touched by someone else, and neither have my children..

NoComet Sat 06-Jul-13 16:08:31

Now, if you were fussing about Mr wimpy style ice cream being made in badly cleared machines or not kept chilled then you would have a point.

Bacteria on money are not going to be actively growing and multiplying. Bacteria in sweet, moist milk are.

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 16:11:46

Yes. Because the choice is between a few germs and rubbing your ice cream all over a lab.


There's something called OTT behaviour. Worrying about germs on an ice cream or a tray at McDonald's the definition of OTT.

ivykaty44 Sat 06-Jul-13 20:49:58

If OTT behaviour is not eating shit - then so be it

Tee2072 Sat 06-Jul-13 20:57:40

Ivy do a quick google search for Mythbusters Toothbrush test.

There's shit everywhere.

Bluecarrot Sat 06-Jul-13 21:06:17

My local butcher lifts meat then takes money while wearing the same gloves. It freaks me out so much I don't go there but of course I know that all circulated money is heaving with germs, but this case is so obvious i feel queasy! Bleugh!

Fakebook Sat 06-Jul-13 21:07:59

Get a life.

Nanny0gg Sat 06-Jul-13 21:14:28

<idly wonders how she's lived to nearly 60 with all these nasty germs about...>

KingRollo Sat 06-Jul-13 21:21:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TabithaStephens Sat 06-Jul-13 21:26:23

I've never even thought about this. I think people get too hung up about germs etc.

Altinkum Sat 06-Jul-13 21:49:00

Right so I assume you wash your hands before eating the ice cream... You did after all touch money.

Gloves, you still handle the money and touch the food items, hence still the same germs! And possibly a thousand more with others money.

In my work, we use our bare hands, wash hands regularly and use hand wash after each transaction.

Yabu. Gloves are much worse than bare hands, hands will at times be washed, gloves will never be washed.

It's a false sense of hygiene safety.

ivykaty44 Sat 06-Jul-13 21:54:45

tee of course there is shit everywhere - but still doesn't mean I want to eat the stuff and especially someone else shit

Changebagsandgladrags Sat 06-Jul-13 23:01:14

And when someone takes the gloves out of the packet they are touching them all over with their dirty manky pooey hands. If I were you I'd get out of the ice cream queue altogether. grin

OhDearNigel Sat 06-Jul-13 23:26:34

Another human touched your ice cream cone while preparing it ??

[faints in shock]

OhDearNigel Sat 06-Jul-13 23:27:53

I always watch out for which fries touch the tray, and then throw those out..........

This has got to be a joke post, surely ?

HairyGrotter Sat 06-Jul-13 23:40:13

I read somewhere that most bank notes have cocaine residue on, therefore I make a point of always licking bank notes before paying for my ice cream

rob99 Sat 06-Jul-13 23:44:13

It's a big problem, I don't know what can be done about it but I pray to God that someone will find a solution soon.

Clary Sun 07-Jul-13 00:15:03

I hate the "gloves on to handle food" nonsense. I agree with those who say you can't wash your gloves in the way that you can wash your hands!

I honestly have no problem having other people touching my food with their hands. Think about it - how does all the food you eat get to you? Do you not think it is handled by people somewhere along the way? Yes they wash their hands (maybe...I have worked in a number of food prep factories in my time!) but in between they may/must have touched other surfaces, cutlery, etc.

But then I pick up an eat food off the kitchen floor (it is clean tho because I clean it often) grin

Tee2072 Sun 07-Jul-13 13:57:57

ivy my point is that you're already reading it. Even in your own home.

YoureAllABunchOfBastards Sun 07-Jul-13 14:02:49

Eh? Jesus Christ, it has never occurred to me to worry about any of this crap!

Tee2072 Sun 07-Jul-13 14:11:12

Eating it, rather. Sorry. Should have proofread.

jamdonut Sun 07-Jul-13 14:13:26

Hands should be washed regularly and things like trays kept clean, but really,something like ice-cream in a cone is unlikely to kill you! I hate to see dirty conditions ,but I would never even have given that a second thought when buying one!
How the hell did I reach almost 49 years of age? Certainly not by worrying about things like this...and my children (now teenage to 20's) have hardly ever had sickness or diarrhoea.hmm

YoureAllABunchOfBastards Sun 07-Jul-13 16:31:32

I just read this out loud to DH. dS1, aged 6, piped up 'Just eat the ice cream and throw the cone in the bin. That's what she should do if she's that worried.'

primallass Sun 07-Jul-13 16:55:31

It's threads like this that make me realise how slovenly I am.

ChuffMuffin Sun 07-Jul-13 17:07:08

I really don't think a touched ice cream cone will kill you. But if you're worried look them up on Scores on the Doors, it's a website that lists food hygiene ratings for takeaways/shops by you. So it'll show you the places that really ARE dirty feckers.

I made the mistake of searching my postcode and now I can't eat from about two thirds of the takeaways round here. I'm talking 1 out of 5 scores. One mobile catering van even scored 0 out of 5 shock. Bleurgh.

Branleuse Sun 07-Jul-13 17:12:58


mumofapirate Sun 07-Jul-13 17:18:41

I wouldn't complain personally as I don't have freshly washed hands myself so it'd be a bit daft. So yes yabu imo.

Tee2072 Sun 07-Jul-13 17:45:48

Chuff when they first started doing that our favourite Chinese got a 0/5.

Not our favourite any more!

RockChicken1 Sun 07-Jul-13 19:10:39

Speaking as a microbiologist this is honestly not something you need to worry about. Yes coins are dirty but they don't provide very good environments for bacteria to grow. You would need a sufficient number of bacterial cells to transfer from the coins, to the ice cream man's hands, to the cone and then to your body. And for the bacteria to be pathogenic, most species are harmless.

Didactylos Sun 07-Jul-13 19:19:59

but this is what you have stomach acid for!

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