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Right Bites
Guide to Fresh Fruits
January 14, 2013
Fruits
Signs of Freshness
Signs of poor quality

Apples
Want firm and good color. Good quality apples are usually crisp, juicy, and sweet.
Soft bruises, discoloration.

Avocado
Smooth, clear skin. Will give way to gentle pressure.
Blemishes, dark sunken spots, and cracks
Banana
Best when yellow with some brown freckles. If green, should be very firm.
Blemishes, black soft patches or bruises. Do not refrigerate - bananas can damage < 55 degrees F
Cherry
Large, firm with stems intact. Want them brightly colored.
Brown spots, too soft, too hard, or very small in size.
Grapefruit
Want it firm. Scratches don't necessarily mean bad on thick skinned fruit.
Soft, water soaked spots and lack of bright color.
Grapes
Select grapes with green or purple, pliable stems that the grapes don't just fall off of. Grapes should be tender/firm and plump
Brown stems with grapes falling off; wrinkled or soft grapes.
Guava
Smooth surface and gives slightly with applied pressure
Hard and has blemishes
Kiwi
Will give-way to touch, but does not leave an indentation. The skin often looks water stained, this is normal and will not affect flavor
Shriveled, too soft, mold.
Lemon
Firm, thin, smooth, brightly colored.
Dull color, soft, spongy, and have bumpy or wrinkled skin.
Melon
Want a sweet, pleasing smell. Most melons need to ripen 2-4 days at room temperature at home.
A stem that's still attached, overly yellow color, soft pulp, and mold indicate poor quality.
Mango
Firm fruit which gives way some when pressed. Smell for a ripe fruity aroma
Very soft fruit with a lot of black spots or bruises.
Orange
Look for brightly colored, waxy rind, heavy oranges.
Dull, dry, and rough skin texture.
Papaya
Choose fruits that are green/yellow to full yellow, firm but give slightly when pressed.
Very soft fruit and has white patches.
Peach
Plump, fairly firm but somewhat soft. Skin color between red areas should be creamy/yellow.
Hard with a green color are likely not to ripen. Overripe fruits will be bruised and too soft.
Pear
Should be firm but slightly soft. Color depends on type and varieties - some are pale, others are rich in color.
Shriveled or wilted pears with dull appearing skin will usually no ripen.
Pineapple
Fruit should have a nice ripe aroma, golden yellow in color and somewhat soft. If you pull the middle leaves from a pineapple, and they pull easily, it is usually ready to eat.
Discolored or soft spots mean it is too ripe. Unpleasant smell is a sign of decay.
Plum
Fruit should be plump, well colored, and slightly give to gentle pressure.
Hard, cracked, or shriveled fruit. If it is too soft, then the plum is too ripe.
Pomegranate
Want firm, thin skinned fruit. Varies in color from red to maroon.
Cracks or discoloration.
Strawberry
The stem should still be attached to firm, plump, brightly colored fruit.
White areas, dark spots, discolored spots.
Lime
Brightly colored and firm - want lime green.
Soft spots, too squishy, traces of mold
Watermelon
Firm, heavy, free of cracks; when tapped, it should be hollow sounding
Pale colored flesh, white streaks and white seeds.


DISCLAIMER: This handout is for informational purposes only. If you have concerns about your own health, please notify your physician or other healthcare provider.