Citrus 101

 

Food Safety Information

 

At Sunkist, we have the upmost confidence in the quality and safety of our fresh citrus.

The well being of our consumers is our top priority in delivering a healthy, nutritious, great-tasting product. Our livelihood depends on it. And the citrus you buy in stores or eat in restaurants is the very same citrus we put on the table for our families and friends.

All Sunkist-marketed fruit conforms to international Codex standards and is grown and packed under the rules, regulations and supervision of federal and state agencies including:

  • the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
  • the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA)
  • the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
  • the California Department of Food and Agriculture(CDFA)

Sunkist packinghouses follow Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) established in the Code of Federal Regulations and have food safety programs based on the principles of HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point). Programs include:

  • facility and equipment sanitation procedures
  • employee training and hygiene
  • pest control
  • microbiological testing
  • inspections
  • production and quality controls
  • transportation and storage controls
  • traceability programs.

In addition, our packinghouses undergo and pass annual audits of GMPs and food safety/security programs by qualified third party auditors. And we work closely with renowned industry and university authorities to ensure we have the most current information. We do everything possible to ensure that Sunkist® fresh citrus is clean, wholesome and ready to eat. 

As growers and shippers of fresh produce, we are on the front line of food safety. Everyone, however, has an important role in keeping our food supply safe.

The safety of the food product depends not only on its cleanliness leaving the packing facility, but equally on how it is handled in the restaurant kitchen, or in the home.

Here are some tips everyone can use when preparing fresh fruits and vegetables for their families and customers.

  • Always wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water prior to handling food. It may sound silly, but sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to yourself while washing your hands – that song lasts about the needed 20-seconds to ensure cleanliness. Remember to wash your hands again if your food preparation is interrupted.
  • Wash produce with running tap water. Using a colander or scrub brush is helpful…but make sure these items are clean.
  • In addition to thorough hand washing, make sure that utensils, countertops and cutting boards are thoroughly cleaned prior to use in food preparation.
  • Keep fresh fruits and vegetables away from food items such as raw chicken, meat, seafood and eggs unless they are being properly cooked with these items.