When preparing any fresh produce, start with clean hands. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water before and after preparation. Wash all produce thoroughly under running water before preparing and/or eating. This includes produce grown at home, purchased from a grocery store, or bought at a farmers’ market.
Washing fruits and vegetables with soap, detergent, or commercial produce wash is not needed. It is important to wash the surface of the produce, even if you do not plan to eat the skin. Dirt and bacteria can be transferred from the surface when peeling or cutting produce. Scrub firm produce, such as melons and cucumbers, with a clean produce brush. After washing, dry produce with a clean cloth towel or paper towel to further reduce bacteria that may be present on the surface.
- Many precut, bagged, or packaged produce items are prewashed and ready to eat. If so, it will be stated on the packaging and you can use the produce without further washing.
- Cut away any damaged, discolored, or bruised areas on fresh fruits and vegetables before preparing and/or eating.
- Make sure all cutting boards and knives used to cut fresh produce are washed in soapy water and rinsed before using again.
Source: Food Safety.gov