The Food and Drug Administration is issuing a warning to avocado eaters: wash the produce before consuming.
A recent FDA report said that eating unwashed avocados can lead to Listeria poisoning or salmonella.
While the consideration may seem odd, since consumers don’t eat the peel of an avocado, washing the avocado is the only sure way to prevent bacteria and dirt from transferring from the peel, to the knife, to the inside portion.
According to the report, 0.74 percent of the 1,615 tested avocados were confirmed to show the prevalence of salmonella. Another 361 avocados were tested for listeria pathogens, of which 64 or 17.73 percent tested positive for the bacteria.
Consumers should scrub firm produce with a produce brush before drying it clean with a paper towel.
Consumption of food contaminated with listeria can cause serious infection accompanied by fever, muscle aches, headache stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and convulsions.