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Why is it important to wash the skin before you eat an avocado?



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Photo: Lyudmila One / EyeEm / Getty Images

It turns out that the avocado hand is not the only risk associated with the unofficial fruit of the millennium , A recent update on an FDA investigation indicated that over 17 percent of avocado skin samples tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes, aka Listeria (In other humiliating food safety news, Jimmy Dean recalled nearly 30,000 pounds of sausage that may contain metal.)

Of the 361 avocado skin samples tested by the FDA, 17.3 percent tested positive for Listeria. This number may seem like NBD since basically but nobody actually eats the skin, but cutting into the fruit can lead to cross contamination. According to the FDA, "Even if you're not planning to eat the skin, it's still important to wash the products first, so that dirt and bacteria will not be transferred from the surface when peeling or slicing produce." And if it does For "hard product" like avocados, you should scrub with a real product brush (not just run underwater for a few seconds), as recommended. Well, yes, you probably also made watermelon, pineapple, and mangoes (which were ironically recalled because of Listeria concerns) wrong.

As part of their investigation, the FDA also examined avocado pulp (meat) samples for bacteria. Some of the samples were positive, but at a much lower percentage than the skin samples. Of 1

,615 pulp samples, 0.74 percent were positive for Salmonella and "well below 1 percent" positive for Listeria. While washing your avocado skins does not completely eliminate your risk, it is significantly reduced. (Use your freshly washed Avo tomato sauce in this peppermint crunchy avocado chocolate mousse.)

To be clear, there is no avocado outbreak of listeria or avocado recall right now (Phew). However, it is definitely worth washing the avocados, as the CDC has reported outbreaks of avocado-transmitted diseases involving Salmonella and E. Coli in the past – and there were several Listeria-related vegetarian recalls. ICYMI, Listeria can cause all sorts of nasty symptoms such as headaches, cramps, fever, and muscle aches, according to CDC (for example, the pregnancy increases the risk of infection tenfold). So it's not really something you want to mess around with in the name avo toast.

BRB while we buy a vegetable brush this year to put it in all stockings!


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