Tips for Fresh Produce Safety

Buying Tips

Purchase fruit and vegetables that are  not bruised or damaged.

When selecting fresh-cut produce – such as a half a watermelon or bagged salad greens – choose items that are refrigerated or surrounded by ice.

Bag fresh fruits and vegetables separately from meat, poultry and seafood products.

Remember that the drips from the meat products may contain bacteria which will seep into your other purchases.

Storage Tips

Store perishable fresh fruits and vegetables (like strawberries, lettuce, herbs, and mushrooms) in a clean refrigerator at a temperature of 40° F  or below.

Refrigerate all produce that is purchased pre-cut or peeled

Preparation Tips

Begin with clean hands. Wash your hands for 20 seconds with warm water and soap before and after preparing fresh produce.

Cut away any damaged or bruised areas on fresh fruits and vegetables. Produce that looks rotten should be discarded.

All produce should be thoroughly washed before eating. Wash fruits and vegetables under running water just before eating, cutting or cooking.

Even if you plan to peel the produce before eating, it is still important to wash it first.

Washing fruits and vegetables with soap or detergent or using commercial produce washes is not recommended.

Scrub firm produce, such as melons and cucumbers, with a clean produce brush.

Drying produce with a clean cloth towel or paper towel may further reduce bacteria that may be present.

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