On Friday, October 15, Chiquita brand made a huge announcement that will change the way we look at salad forever. As the makers of “Fresh Express” pre-packaged salads, Chiquita has already been a revolutionary force in the food industry.
One major factor that has affected consumer health and infringed on decisions to choose from the salad menu in the last couple years has been recent outbreaks of E. coli and salmonella found in broccoli, spinach and romaine lettuce–three major natural sources of calcium and vitamins part of a healthy diet.
With these scares pushing consumers away from the vegetable aisle, reassurance from manufacturers of clean produce doesn’t always reel us back in. When you take into consideration that until now, one of the key elements in produce washes was chlorine, the health conscious who steer away from chemical washed produce reach for organics.
Unfortunately, organic produce may still contain traces of E. coli and bacteria that leads to salmonella poisoning, so what is a consumer to do?
Fret no more, as Chiquita is releasing a brand new product for consumers called FreshRinse designed to not only reduce the presence of microorganisms on your leafy greens, but maintain and possibly even extend freshness for longer periods of time.
After extensive research and testing, scientists involved in the production of FreshRinse discovered that FreshRinse reduced the number of food borne pathogens by 750 percent when compared to chlorinated water washes, it also maintains the natural color and smell of fresh produce–a factor which could extend produce life, as well as preserve the natural taste and freshness.
In conjunction with the release of FreshRinse, Chiquita plans to provide consumers with information through online and television campaigns and educational resources.
Right now, the one thing that has me a little bit leery of this new product is the lack of information provided about what is in FreshRinse. Resources that coincided with the press release pertaining to FreshRinse included a “Scientific Background Summary,” that listed the main ingredient as nothing more than an FDA approved, Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) ingredient.
What does that mean?
While it sounds like a dream come true in the face of E. coli and salmonella salad scares, I can only hope more details about the actual ingredients in FreshRinse make an appearance sooner, rather than later. Just because the FDA approved these “GRAS” ingredients, doesn’t mean I want to put them into my body.
So what do you say, Chiquita? Can we have a little more information about not just what this amazing new product does, but where it comes from and what we as health-conscious consumers can expect from it?