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Old 07-08-2019, 10:58 PM   #1
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Washing watermelons

My back is bothering me more and more, so when I went to pick up a watermelon at the store last week, I put it in the kid seat of the cart so I wouldn't have to bend way over and heft it out of the basket part when I went to pay for it.

When I got home, it occurred to me how dirty those seats probably are, what with kids in diapers sitting in them and all. I also stick my purse there and the bottom of my purse has been everywhere on the ground, which is why it gets hung up on its own hook as soon as I come home and never gets put on a table or counter.

So I took a damp paper towel to wash off the watermelon and I was surprised at how dirty the paper towel got. So I washed it a little more thoroughly.

What I was concerned about was that in cutting into the watermelon, I'd notice that sometimes I'd have bits of rind that ended up on the inside. I thought it might be possible for the knife to carry bacteria and dirt into the watermelon as well. So Imma wash my watermelons from now on.

Does anyone else do this?
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Old 07-08-2019, 11:02 PM   #2
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Can't say that I have, certainly food for thought. I doubt I'll stress myself over it though.
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Old 07-09-2019, 12:10 AM   #3
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All fruits and vegetables that aren't generally peeled and/or cooked are likely to have pathogens on the surface. Most people have a strong enough immune system to fight it off. Washing can't remove all of it, especially if the surface is rough.

I don't worry about it much, either. The immune system needs something to work on to keep it strong I take medication that impacts my immune system and I've still never had food poisoning.
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Old 07-09-2019, 12:17 AM   #4
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I often wash other melons before cutting them. I remember an e-coli episode and the recommendation wash the peel before cutting, because the germs on the outside do get carried inside by the knife. I'll have to admit that I don't always do it and I don't think it has ever made me sick.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:06 AM   #5
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Don't forget to wash your bananas before you peel them.
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Old 07-10-2019, 07:26 PM   #6
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I wash melons prior to cutting and if you've ever seen the back of a produce section at a store you would as well. The larger the piece of fruit the more likely it is to have something gross on the outside. Melons in particular are stored in big open bins and every sneeze, grimy hand prints and rodent that ever ran across the bin leaves a trace. Knives "drag' dirt into the flesh of the fruit.
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Old 07-10-2019, 07:45 PM   #7
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I wash melons prior to cutting and if you've ever seen the back of a produce section at a store you would as well. The larger the piece of fruit the more likely it is to have something gross on the outside. Melons in particular are stored in big open bins and every sneeze, grimy hand prints and rodent that ever ran across the bin leaves a trace. Knives "drag' dirt into the flesh of the fruit.
Agreed. Cantaloupes hold a lot of stuff in the nooks and crannies, so I'm extra careful to wash and scrub them prior to cutting. Only takes a minute or so.
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:22 PM   #8
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OK, so now I don't feel completely crazy washing them from now on. Thanks!
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Old 07-11-2019, 12:09 AM   #9
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Cantaloupes have often been recalled due to listeria, and sometimes other pathogens, due to that porous netting of theirs. And often it has been organically grown ones (as well as other things, for that matter), due to some compost that wasn't brought up to a high enough heat to kill them. I remember a time many years ago (probably after they found one had it, they were checking all of them!), there were all sorts of things on tv (yes this was that long ago - before the internet, for the most part) about sterilizing things, using a dilute solution of chlorine bleach, or some hydrogen peroxide. I never got phobic about things that much!
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:01 AM   #10
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I've never washed melons. I will now, as my OCD will force me to after this thread.
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:37 AM   #11
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Washing doesn't kill bacteria

Plus, melons and other fruits and vegetables are contaminated by water, so they are contaminated from the inside, not the outside

But its still a good idea to rinse a melon
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:28 PM   #12
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I'm not looking to kill the bacteria, just wash it off. If soap and hot water gets rid of germs on dishes, though, why wouldn't it get rid of it on watermelons?

And I'm more worried about a melon being contaminated br being put in a cart and by other people, especially kids who are always sick, touching it.
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Old 07-11-2019, 10:35 PM   #13
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I'm a little crazy about washing fruits and vegetables. If it has an edible skin (cherries, apple, nectarine), I wash it. If it will be cut into (melons, peppers, oranges), I wash it. I do not, however, wash bananas.
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Old 07-11-2019, 11:05 PM   #14
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I'm actually more concerned about washing the skins of fruits and veggies to get the insecticides and other sprays off, as opposed to the bacteria.
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Old 07-12-2019, 07:59 AM   #15
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I'm not looking to kill the bacteria, just wash it off. If soap and hot water gets rid of germs on dishes, though, why wouldn't it get rid of it on watermelons?

And I'm more worried about a melon being contaminated br being put in a cart and by other people, especially kids who are always sick, touching it.
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I'm actually more concerned about washing the skins of fruits and veggies to get the insecticides and other sprays off, as opposed to the bacteria.
+1 and +2

and plus 3. -do NOT touch your mouth/face while in the store(s). Wash hands! wash hands! wash hands!

bump fists rather than shake hands, and forget the kissy kissy all together. (I mean the social kind, which is done alot here in Quebec and Europe)
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Old 07-12-2019, 06:19 PM   #16
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I'm actually more concerned about washing the skins of fruits and veggies to get the insecticides and other sprays off, as opposed to the bacteria.
That, and dirt. Years ago, before someone said that all grocery stores should wash their melons before cutting, I remember finding bits of grit in the flesh. Yuck. Now, when I buy sections of pre-cut melons, I make sure everything looks grit free. Himself isn't a fan of watermelon, so I buy a whole one only when the tiny personal-size melons are on sale cheap.
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Old 07-14-2019, 06:33 PM   #17
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I think the supermarket watermelons are tasteless compared to home raised ones, but they're OK in a pinch. I went out last night and bought two of them.
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Old 07-23-2019, 02:40 PM   #18
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I always wash water melon. Don't know why, because I do not wash apple or pears.
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Old 07-23-2019, 04:07 PM   #19
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That's funny Charlie D, but I bet not unusual!

It is quite likely for one to see some dirt or mud on a watermelon, after all that is where they are grown.s So one then washes it.

Apple or pear grown in a tree, of course, don't show lumps of soil. Nor do they show the residues of what ever has been sprayed on them.

But I'm sure many here would like to jump in and advise that perhaps you should start to reconsider about the pears and apples!
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Old 07-24-2019, 06:15 PM   #20
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So on the subject, now that I think about it, is it better to wash fruits and vegetables in hot water or cold water?

The reason I'm asking is because I was always told that if you go through poison oak (or ivy), you should rinse off with cold water. Hot water opens the pores of the skin and let the poison sink through where cold water just slides off the skin and takes everything with it.

What I'm wondering is if hot water on fruits and vegetables do the same thing - open the membranes and bring in what's on the surface. That could be a little off putting when it comes to apples and peaches and other fruits.

Anybody know?
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