Originally Posted by GotGarlic
You cannot wash pathogens off of raw produce.
I wont challenge that at the moment. Don't have the time right now to research it.
Here is the USDA page on fruits and vegetables:
Raw Produce: Selecting and Serving it Safely
I realize you have linked info supporting your statement in another thread and I'll get to it eventually...I have a job and a business on top of gardens to deal with
but I am interested in reading it.
BUT the USDA does refer the activity of washing as "reducing" bacteria. Here is a quote from that page "Dry produce with a clean cloth towel or paper towel to further reduce bacteria that may be present".
I'm not a doctor or a scientist, but maybe there is something to reducing bacteria through the action of washing...that consuming large amounts of bacteria is a greater likelihood of illness than smaller amounts. This would support that you in fact DO "reduce" bacteria by washing, BUT in the line of thought you have put forward, you can never get it "all" off.
Why would the USDA say this? if washing vegetables and fruit did nothing to reduce bacteria, washing would be to simply remove debris that would change the taste or texture of the food...like grit for instance. So if there is nothing visible, or texturally evident, washing would be pointless.
I have always said we all need some bacteria to keep our immune systems on the job. In fact, I make KimChee and will be working on sauerkraut here soon and just did my first real crock dill pickles. That is an example of purposely encouraging bacteria...beneficial bacteria!
A pathogen is a biological agent that can cause disease or illness in it's host. it may be bacterial or viral in origin. not all bacteria are pathogens. So maybe washing can remove some of the pathogens that are bacteria, but not pathogens that are not bacteria.