Contents and use
All fresh produce, even organic, can harbor residual pesticides, dirt or harmful microorganisms on the surface. Vegetable washes may either be a number specially-marketed commercial brands, or they may be home recipes. Commercial vegetable washes generally contain surfactants, along with chelating agents, antioxidants, and other agents. Home recipes are generally dilutions of hydrogen peroxide or vinegar, the former of which may be dangerous at high concentrations.
Neither the U.S. Food and Drug Administration nor the United States Department of Agriculture recommend washing fruits and vegetables in anything other than cold water. To date there is little evidence that vegetable washes are effective at reducing the presence of harmful microorganisms, though their application in removing simple dirt and wax is not contested.
- Gerald M. Sapers; Ethan B. Solomon; Karl R. Matthews (28 May 2009). The Produce Contamination Problem: Causes and Solutions. Academic Press. pp. 405–406. ISBN 978-0-12-374186-8.
- Gerald M. Sapers; James R. Gorny; Ahmed Elmeleigy Yousef (29 August 2005). Microbiology Of Fruits And Vegetables. CRC Press. p. 393. ISBN 978-0-8493-2261-7.
- Zander, A. "Washing Fruits and Vegetables." Colorado State University Cooperative Extension, Boulder County. June 30, 2000. http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/foodnut/09380.html
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