Here's How To Wash Fruits and Veggies In The Time Of COVID

You don't need to wash it right away.

IMAGE The Creative Exchange/Unsplash

The coronavirus has everyone especially conscious about handwashing and hygiene. While it's great for our health, this isn't great for our food. 

Did you know that you should not be spraying disinfectants on food packaged in cardboard or plastic wrap? You might actually be doing more harm than good! That's because disinfectants are not meant to be used on food and can be poisonous when applied to your skin and more if it were ingested. If you're spraying containers of food directly, the chances of that goes up.       

What you do need to do is wash your own hands before and after handling anything that came from outside your home. 

The same doesn't have to be said for the food you bring home. It's already been proven that the virus is not transmitted through food. The World Health Organization, or WHO, has declared that food is safe from the virus. In fact, the chances that the packaging of your food will transmit the virus is very low.  

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This may be the unpopular truth in the face of the coronavirus and the global pandemic but fresh fruits and vegetables should actually not be washed until you're ready to either eat it or prepare it for cooking

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The reason behind this is because moisture is one of the leading causes of spoilage,especially of root vegetables and leafy greens. By immediately washing your fruits and vegetables before storing, you are rinsing away any dirt and surface germs but the wet environment also promotes bacterial growth which includes mold. 

If you insist on washing all your fruits and vegetables before storing, remember to dry these well before storing to prevent mold and spoilage from occurring faster than intended. 

Here are more tips on what you should be doing instead of washing fruits and veggies immediately upon arriving at home. These tips will keep your groceries safe to not only keep you safe but put your mind at ease during this pandemic: 

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Photo by Bea Faicol

1 Continue to practice safety procedures. 

Just a reminder: you should still be wearing your face mask and shield and practicing safety precautions if leaving your home. You should continue to stay safe whether you're personally grocery shopping at the palengke, a grocery, a specialty store, a major supermarket, or have groceries delivered. 

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Photo by Unsplash/Randy Fath

2 Handle food safely. 

When you get home with your groceries or when you finally have your groceries from the delivery guys, practice food safety measures, just like any other time when you are preparing food: 

  1. 1. Clean your hands before and after handling food as well as the grocery bags or boxes. 
  2. 2. Separate raw food that will be cooked such as meats and raw food that will not be cooked or ready-to-eat food such as fruits to avoid cross-contamination. Use a separate chopping board for meat vs fresh produce when possible. 
  3. 3. Refrigerate perishable food within two hours.
  4. 4. Sanitize the kitchen counters and other surfaces that you may have touched before washing your hands.     

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Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club,to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

Got your own version of the classic dishes? Pa-share naman! Get your recipe published on Yummy.ph by submitting your recipe here!


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