Here's Why The FDA Says You Shouldn't Use 'Produce Wash'

Residue. It's all about the residue.
Washing produce under water.
GMVozd via Getty Images
Washing produce under water.

These days, there are two camps when it comes to washing your fruits and veggies. One side is happy with rinsing them under water, and the other supports using produce wash, a specially designed soap product.

The FDA tells us there’s no need to use a produce wash, but many people are nervous that water isn’t effective enough on pesticide residue that’s left behind on some of our produce.

Companies that sell “produce wash” definitely feel there is a need. Jenna Arkin, the product development director from Earth Friendly Products (which makes one of these produce washes) told The Huffington Post that their “fruit and veggie wash better removes wax and dirt from produce better than just using water.”

Then why does the FDA say there’s no need for it?

We reached out to the FDA, who are the leaders of food and safety. Peter Cassell, from the office of media affairs at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, explains it:

“The FDA recommends washing fruits and vegetables in cold, drinkable water,
Cassell told HuffPost. “Generally, water rinses off any residue or chemicals that may be on the outside of fruits and vegetables. Using fruit/vegetable washes or dish soaps may result in residue left on the produce and can also change the flavor of your produce.”

And that is why the FDA says to avoid produce washes ― they may leave behind more residue than the product already has in the first place.

In response to the FDA’s aforementioned comment, Arkin replied by saying, “Our product is completely water soluble and does not leave any residue when rinsed off. In our third party tests, our product was more effective at removing wax, dirt and other debris than just using water.”

At the end of the day, it all comes down to how you want to spend your money.

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