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Details Make the Difference - Choosing the best produce

By: Steve Frailey Wednesday August 21, 2019 comments Tags: raw food, organic noni, healthy eating, healthy living

Ever came home from the grocery store only to find the produce you purchased is unripe? How frustrating!

Although every fruit and vegetable contain clues regarding level of ripeness, one doesn’t need to memorize a textbook to discover something ripe and tasty.

Naturally, we always recommend buying certified organic fruit and vegetables grown without herbicides, pesticides and chemical fertilizers. 

Here are some quick and simple tips!

Aroma- When picking up produce with your hand, give it a good whiff. A strong aroma can indicate over-ripeness. A light, sweet smell is a good indicator that the fruit (especially pineapple and melons) is fresh and ripe.

Color- Tree-ripened fruit (apples, oranges, and pears) should have even coloration across the surface. Avoid fruit with dark marks or spots (oranges avoid white streaks). Vine-ripened melons (watermelon) should have a sizable white patch on the bottom. This indicates the length of time the melon was attached to the vine receiving nutrients.

Below are simple tips for specific produce

Apples Dark in color, firm with no soft spots. Weigh the fruit with your non-dominant hand. It should feel heavy for their size. This indicates the fruit is full of yummy juice.
Bananas Bright yellow bananas to be eaten immediately. Green bananas to ripen at home. Click here to learn more about bananas
Grapes Choose grapes that are firm, plump, heavy for their size, and firmly attached to the stem.
Kiwi Fruits Choose fruits that are springy to the touch. Avoid kiwis that are rock hard or mushy.
Peaches Peaches should be fragrant, deep colored (not green) springy to the touch.
Pineapples Choose fruits that smell sweet at the stem end, have fresh looking leaves, and are heavy for their size. Farmers tip: Try pulling out the inner leaves of the pineapple. If the leaves are easily removed, the pineapple is probably ready for consumption.
Pomegranates Pomegranates should feel heavy for their size. Cracks are a good sign that the fruits are bursting with plump seeds as long as no mold is present.
Strawberries Strawberries should be fragrant, uniformly red (not yellow or green), and shiny.
Grapefruits Grapefruit should have smooth, thin skins. Like apples choose fruit that are heavy for their size. Grapefruit should feel firm but slightly springy to the touch.
Cherries Cherries should be plump, slightly firm and dark in color. Farmers Tip: Cherries with intact stems have a longer shelf life.
Cantaloupes Choose fruits that are fragrant and cream or golden in color (not green). Avoid fruits with soft spots, although the end opposite the stem should be slightly soft.
Blueberries This superfood should be firm and a rich blue in color. Avoid mushy (over ripe) red or green berries (under ripe). Click here for more on superfoods


Vegetables and Leafy Greens

***In contrast with fruit most vegetables (cucumbers, peppers, onions, potatoes) you want as firm as possible. This is because softness can be an indicator of slow rotting or bruising****
Leafy greens (lettuce, spinach, and kale)  Leafy greens should be firm, crisp, and plump leaves that are consistently colored is ideal. Leaves should give a crisp “snap” sound when breaking off leaves from the bunch.
Summer squash (zucchini and yellow squash) Summer squash are thin skinned compared to winter squash, so look for bruising and soft spots. Farmers Tip: Smaller squash tend to be on the sweeter side.
Corn Corn should contain bright green and tightly wrapped husks. The husk tassels should also be brown and sticky to the touch. Farmers Tip: When corn is harvested, sugar in the corn immediately starts converting into starch. Shucking corn hastens this process and ultimately affects the corn’s flavor.
Root vegetables (potatoes, garlic, carrots, turnips) Root vegetables should be firm. Avoid root vegetables with cracks on the base indicating not enough water during the germination and vegetative stage.


Produce Storage:
Go home right after produce shopping. Don’t leave the produce in the car to run other errands. Produce should be stored out of direct sunlight. Do not store fruits and vegetables together.

Farmers Tip: Fruits emit ethylene gas ripening the fruit itself while quickly spoiling surrounding vegetables.

How we harvest noni fruit:

Noni fruit is truly unique compared to the rest of the fruit kingdom. The fruit is produced by the tree followed by flowers. Bees are attracted to flowers, deliver vital nutrients that give noni fruit its 165 superfood compounds. Noni fruit is picked white which indicates full maturity and potency, when it’s hard like a potato. Then quickly softens and becomes soft and translucent like a tomato. Within hours, noni begins to ferment losing its potent qualities making transporting fresh noni fruit very difficult. After years of trial and error, we at Hawaiian Organic Noni developed a low heat dehydrating system that dries below 115 F preserving all 165 compounds in the raw fruit. This product is Noni Fruit Leather, a certified organic raw food that is 14x more potent than noni juice. When it comes to choosing noni, we have you covered!


Steve Frailey

About the Author: Steve Frailey

My wife and I (Steve Frailey) moved to Kauai, Hawaii in 1982 from our organic farm in California. There were no roads, electricity, water or buildings but lots of Noni trees (Morinda Citrifolia) in our valley. We also developed a deep relationship with Noni that was growing all through our valley.  Today we run our Hawaiian Organic Noni farm, and share the gift of health with people throughout the world.