Go to National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa Go to Te Ao Hou homepage
No. 11 (July 1955)
– 63 –

The Maori Mother and her Child


All utensils used for preparing baby's food and its storage should be scrupulously clean. They should as much as possible be kept separate from the utensils for the rest of the family.

One of the greatest dangers in the preparation of food is the risk of contamination by flies. Flies carry dirt and disease. It is very dangerous for flies to settle on baby's food or on the teat or anything used for the food. All utensils therefore should be kept covered away from flies.

Remember that clean milk can be infected by careless handling or dirty utensils. The following precautions are necessary to ensure cleanliness:


Utensils should be thoroughly boiled every morning and, before use, kept in the water in which they have been boiled.


Wash your hands before making feeds and before feeding baby.


Wash and boil the bottle after feeds and leave in a basin of cold water until needed again.


The teat should not have a big hole in it; when the hole becomes too large, get a new teat.


The teat should be washed after use by dropping a little salt into it and rubbing in well with the fingers. Then pour boiled water over it to remove salt and slime, put teat in clean dry mug and cover with clean cloth or saucer. It should be put into boiling water once a day.


Above all, every single article used in the preparation of baby's food must always be kept very clean and not used for anything else.

Utensils for milk mixture

I half-pint or pint jug, marked by ounces, 1 large jug. 1 large tablespoon, 1 teaspoon, 1 knife, 1 clean plate, for the spoons and knife, 1 fine