Statement of Benjamin Cohen, Senior Staff Attorney for the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) on Congress’s Ordering USDA to Submit New Quarterly Reports on Its Enforcement of the Imported Meat and Poultry Safety Laws
Kitchen surfaces and hands aren’t the only things that need to be cleaned—some foods do too. Others—like raw meat and poultry—should not be washed, and doing so may cause more harm than good.
There is good reason to wash produce, but it’s not a panacea. Washing fruits won’t remove bacteria that are inside the flesh itself, such as Salmonella inside a tomato. But it can remove surface dirt, pesticide residues, and almost-invisible insects.