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Recently, a survey of 60 million consumers has been at the heart of food news. In its new issue, the association focused on an everyday product used by 7 out of 10 households: bagged salads. To do this, the organization decided to analyze 26 salad references, 13 classic lettuces and 13 conventional lamb’s lettuce, organic or “without pesticide residue”. Verdict? The result is worrying since 21 references contain pesticides.

Faced with this result, it is legitimate to ask whether it is necessary to wash the salad to get rid of these pesticides? An expert rightly answered the question.

Washing the salad helps get rid of harmful bacteria on the surface as well as dirt. However, what about pesticides? Interviewed by the magazine 60 million consumers, Jean-Pierre Cravedi, toxicologist and former research director of INRA, affirms that washing salad does get rid of pesticides but only in part.

Indeed, the expert specifies that “Washing will not have any effects on pesticides that are not soluble in water, nor on those lodged in the plant matrix. It just eliminates soluble residues present on the surface of the leaves. So, even after washing the salad, we still consume pesticides.

For more effective washing, many turn to white vinegar or even baking soda. However, this would not really be optimal: “as these products (white vinegar or potassium bicarbonate) modify the pH of the water, this can help remove certain residues sensitive to an acidic or basic pH”. However, like water, these products will not eliminate all pesticides.

In order to get rid of pesticides as much as possible, it is best to carry out “one wash with a few drops of white vinegar, one with a little potassium bicarbonate, then one last with clean water.”


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