Cleaning/washing fruit and veg

I have seen a few times the rechargeable submersible capsule ultrasonic washers. Phew say that twice on one breath.

For the knowledgeable ones, good idea or not? My arthritic hands are hoping good idea but my logical mind is not so sure. Of course the claims about disinfection, sanitising and pesticide destruction by using the gadget are questionable at best. I am wondering if it would work in a bowl or sink of water to wash fruit n veg.

I have a small jewellery dedicated ultrasonic bath that died the job really well on jewellery. But can a portable ultrasonic capsule work on fruit n veg?


Worth a patent to offer up an ultrasonic sink as the product every kitchen should have? :rofl:

I’m not about to comment on the egg devices. I suspect they may be too low powered to be effective. It’s worth considering Ultrasonic cleaners work best on hard metal surfaces. Softer surfaces tend to absorb - dull the energy waves. One objective view that relates to plastics.

For larger parts cleaners EG 10l capacity the ultrasonic transducers used consume 240W. The cleaning frequency needs to be optimised. The 40kHz frequency commonly used for metal may or may not be ideal for fruit. Noticed one can get a drive unit to clean vinyl records.

Noted some suggest leaving items in the cleaning baths for up to 30 minutes. The process is not instantaneous.

Assume there may be some in the community with a suitably sized cleaner they might like to trial clean a few spuds or carrots etc.


I could not find any independent reviews. The only ‘value claims’ come from those selling the product.


That would be my concern. Ultrasonic washers have been around for quite a while but that doesn’t mean they work well on veges or that all the models produced (or any?) have enough power to do the job.

At least some of these devices have advertising campaigns filled with all the health, purity and naturalness keywords that concern me as being meaningless.

If the possibility of harm lurking on the surface of your carrots bothers you it may be that scrubbing with water and a brush would be quicker and more effective. Unless some maker produces evidence that their product does clean veges quicker and better I would leave it in the might work category.

Imagine your chagrin if your dinner party or baby food is delayed because somebody forgot to charge the vege washer.


I can empathise with anyone with arthritis. Although holding a knife and chopping or cutting (from observing those with more severe conditions) is also challenging.

An alternative might be a mini under sink gurney (pressure washer), although it might create a bit of unwanted spray. A good nozzle can strip paint from timber, hence stray dirt, the occasional grub etc should come free from fruit or veg.


We have a Blanco mixer that can cause harm to most veg or close enough. We put the veg in a colander, in the [deep] sink and rinse under the spray. No dexterity required beyond prepping the veg.

I would expect any mixer of similar design would be equally effective, water pressure dependent.


Sounds like snake oil.

Cleaning fruit and veges is easy. Fill the sink with warm water, squirt of detergent and lightly brush/wipe. They will be cleaned.

If you are worried about microbes, use a small splash of bleach (sodium hypochlorite). This is what the commercial food industry does for many fruits and vegetables sold and eaten fresh.


I once owned a professional simple ultrasonic (U/S) bath for my dental surgery using 1000W. U/S waves will work well on hard metallic objects; soft items like food or plastic will only absorb the pulses. No meaningful disinfection occurs, only removal of debris. After this cycle my instruments would be rinsed, then go into an autoclave.
I then bought an ultrasonic thermal disinfector which not only uses U/S but also a strong disinfectant and detergent. It cleaned the instruments much better, but still does not sterilise. Again, final treatment is in an autoclave.
The idea of a portable, battery-powered U/S that only has a 60W output is a waste of time. I’m sorry for your arthritis predicament and can see why this device looks promising, however I would simply rinse the veggies etc in a bowl or basin of water.


Just what I thought. I could be onto a shonky here.


I’m not worried about microbes, that’s what stomach acid is for. It’s mainly the washing there of. I thought it was a “too good to be true” and that logic and physics wouldn’t back it up.


Unfortunately not all bacteria is killed by stomach acid: food poisoning is caused when food is contaminated by bacteria such as Coli, Salmonella etc.
Some can even thrive in very acid conditions such as the ulcer causing H.Pylori.


Quite true. We do need to deal with microbes in our life and food.

We should stick to all those rituals we all got in childhood training about when to wash your hands etc and cooks should observe all of those carefully and learn a few more about food storage and preparation.

OTOH, you, your kitchen, bathroom and food will never be sterile - but they don’t need to be. Nor do you need fancy wipes, cleansers, sprays and gadgets (ultrasound or otherwise) to achieve good results.


As long as infectious pathogens don’t exist, one should be okay. The air we breath and within homes contained millions of spores/cells per cubic metre, so it is impossible to get true sterilisation unless one has a filtered atmosphere like in hospital operating theatres or some laboratory/manufacturing conditions. Unfortunately it is bad news for the (OCD) cleano-philes which exist within the community.


For fruit & vegetables, I use a Sonicator, a US invention, a metal probe powdered by your house electricity. You can immerse the probe into a large stainless steel bowl containing a solution of sodium carbonate (dissolve a tablespoon in water) + a couple of drops of dishwashing liquid to aid wetting. Works well for me. For items that stay afloat, you need to find something to keep them immersed. I use 2 half-moon hard flat plastic discs. When I wash strawberries the water turns pinkish and the strawberries last for a few weeks in the fridge. That’s how I know it works.

A Sonicator is a common scientific device useful in laboratory work.

How to best grow, handle and store strawberries from farm to home?

Moisture/humidity or allowing the strawberries to warm from optimum cold storage temperatures are advised as shortening fruit life and quality. Strawberries loose quality with age primarily due to the ripening process. Poor storage and handling take advantage of the natural chemical processes within the fruit.

The release of pink colouring into the water when using the sonicator type device suggests it is damaging the strawberry cell structure in some way and releasing some of the amino acids from within the fruit.


To the point it might be a ‘US invention’ it might more correctly be opined as French. Someone of great importance for a number of reasons.

There after it is mostly a matter of conjecture as to whether using the same technology in a slightly different way should be considered invention.