Doesn't it seem like we're seeing more and more cases of foodborne illness from seemingly innocuous foods? Foods that should, in theory, be safe to eat with little preparation – lettuce and spinach, for example. The reality is that harmful bacteria may be in the soil or water where produce grows, and, if so, it can come in contact with fruits and vegetables and contaminate them. Fresh produce may also become contaminated after it is harvested, such as during storage or preparation.
A surprising number of Americans don't wash their fruits and vegetables prior to eating them – and even if they're not contaminated, they may still have dirt, debris from transit, and other residues on them that really should be washed away. The takeaway: giving your fruits and vegetables a thorough rinse is just an all-around good idea.
Some Quick & (Hopefully Not) Dirty Tips:
- Cut away any damaged or bruised areas on fresh fruits and vegetables before preparing and/or eating
- It probably goes without saying, but it bears mentioning: throw away any produce that looks rotten
- Wash all produce thoroughly before preparing and/or eating, including produce grown at home or bought from a grocery store or farmers’ market
- Even if you do not plan to eat the skin, it is still important to wash produce first so dirt and bacteria are not transferred from the surface when peeling or cutting produce
Washing Produce: A Primer
Fruits and vegetables with a thick or shiny peel that will be discarded can often be rinsed prior to peeling with little more than a stream of warm water. Many vegetables and some citrus fruits are coated in a layer of edible wax for protection during transit and on the grocery shelf. A rinse in very warm water can help to remove some or all of this waxy layer.
If you're concerned about potential residues on your produce and want to give your fruits and veggies a more thorough cleaning prior to eating them, our Fresh & Clean Kitchen™ Purifying Soap was developed specifically to provide a food-safe way to wash even the most delicate of fruits and veggies.*
Made with whole plant oils and infused with a purifying blend of grapefruit, tea tree, and lemon essential oils, this soap helps to emulsify dirt and residues that cling to produce so that they can be easily rinsed away.
To use, make a cold water wash by running a steady stream of cool water over the surface of the soap to fill your sink. Once the basin of your sink is filled to your desired level, submerge your produce in the sudsy water. Remove and rinse thoroughly with clean water to remove any remaining soapy residue. Dry and proceed with your recipe as you typically would.
Keep Your Cutting Surfaces Clean
Clean produce is only as clean as the surface it is prepared on. To clean and help neutralize bacteria on your kitchen surfaces, sprinkle a few drops of our Fresh & Clean Kitchen™ Purifying Essential Oil Blend on a rag or directly onto the surface you wish to clean, then wipe thoroughly to spread the blend evenly across the surface. Follow by wiping with a rag saturated with hot water to remove and residue that remains. Repeat as necessary.
Shop This Story