This Food Causes Majority of Foodborne Illnesses

April 19, 2013 | By | Comments (9)

Simple Vegetables

Plenty of us are careful when handling raw meat and poultry, but will bite into an apple after a simple rub with our t-shirt. Turns out we might not be paying close enough attention to how we’re handling our fruits and vegetables. According to a new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 51 percent of foodborne illnesses come from produce. Makes you think twice about eating that apple before washing it, huh?

To minimize the risk of food poisoning, produce should always be washed well—especially if it won’t be cooked (bagged fresh-cut produce and fruit labeled “prewashed” or “triple-washed” are fine to eat as they are). To effectively reduce potential contaminants—like salmonella—fruits and vegetables should be scrubbed under running water. Soaking your produce won’t do the trick, because the running water plays a major role in eliminating dirt and bacteria. For veggies with a firm or rough surface, use a vegetable brush and remember to wash the rind and skin even if you won’t be eating them, since cutting or peeling can spread germs to the inside.

More kitchen safety tips.


  1. shalilah2002

    I don’t think I’d ever rub a piece of fruit or food on my shirt. yes running water.

    April 20, 2013 at 11:54 am
  2. CT

    Rather misleading headline, given that it encompasses hundreds of individual food items. Also, your readers need to know that sessile food crops — those that grow close to the ground — are far more likely to be contaminated with the enteric bacteria that causes GI illness than are tree fruits. Think lettuce, not apples. Apples are more likely to have pesticide residue, field greens are more likely to have bacteria from irrigation water draining upstream cattle and hog feedlots.

    This kind of reporting is why I’ve never subscribed to RS — this, and the mindless focus on pop culture, appearance, and looking younger than you are. I don’t care — will keep my hard-earned money and use my time doing things I like to do instead of trying to dupe others into thinking I’m not 58.

    April 20, 2013 at 6:38 pm
  3. Dina

    Easy solution, shop organic!

    April 24, 2013 at 2:33 pm
  4. Karen

    It just came out in the newspapers yesterday about Thermotherapy for produce. It only really talked about how it keeps food fresh, but now it is an even more important article.

    April 24, 2013 at 2:39 pm
  5. Kat

    How am I supposed to scrub lettuce?

    April 24, 2013 at 2:44 pm
  6. AR

    why would someone who so adamantly doesn’t want to subscribe to your magazine take the time to read an article and comment on it? Makes you wonder….

    April 24, 2013 at 2:55 pm
  7. Susan

    You absolutely can soak your produce clean by fiiling your sink full of water and adding 1 cup of vineger. Let it soak, then rinse well. Also shopping organically can help.. This is one of the worst pieces of journalism I have seen today-can’t say ever because so much of what is written is just garbage. If you would dig a little byond the single sourceyou have cited, this could have been a helpful peice instead of a half done, unfinshed infammatory pargraph with a catchy headline.

    April 24, 2013 at 2:56 pm
  8. mary

    For those interested in food safety, see

    April 25, 2013 at 8:37 am
  9. ECK

    Just a reminder to all that organic produce doesn’t equal safe. Organic produce is still often grown in the open, not just in greenhouses, and is exposed to environmental waste, any germs or bacteria during harvest and bird/animal urine and droppings, which can transmit disease. You should still completely wash even organic produce.

    April 25, 2013 at 2:40 pm

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s