Germ Illustration

Washing Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

  • Before handling any foods, wash your hands with soap and water. Dry with a paper towel.
  • After removing and discarding the outer leaves of vegetables such as lettuce or cabbage, wash your hands again.
  • Wash all fruits and vegetables thoroughly in running water that is safe to drink. Use a clean colander or clean sink. Do not use soap or detergent, as they may be absorbed into the food.
  • Use running water to rinse the fruits and vegetables. Do not soak lettuce or cabbage leaves in a sink of water.
  • Use a clean brush to scrub the outside of melons, potatoes, carrots and any other vegetables or fruit that have hard surfaces.
  • Cut away any damaged or bruised areas as harmful bacteria can live in these areas.
  • Wash, rinse and sanitize the knife, cutting boards and surfaces after slicing produce.
  • Always place washed produce in a clean container.
  • Store fresh fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator at 4℃ (40℉) within two hours of peeling or cutting. Discard the food if it is left at room temperature for two hours or more.

Last modified: February 19, 2020