We eat many fruits and veggies at home and I am concerned about the amount pesticides on fruits like strawberries. Is washing the fruit effective enough? Does a thorough wash vs. a quick rinse make any difference?
A long term answer would be to grow your own if possible. That way you have complete control over your food. Or at least purchase from a local farmer that is willing to let you see how he/she grows their produce.
Even organics need to be washed. Most all commercial organics use a form of pest control (most likely diatomaceous earth), they also use natural fertilizers like manure and compost. None of those things are items you need to directly ingest.
The best advice I have is to wash then soak fruits and vegetables in lukewarm water. After a soak wash again. For foods with pitted surfaces, strawberries, potatoes, etc, use a soft bristled brush to gently scrub the food. That will get most anything off the outside.
Of course there will be trace amounts of anything that was sprayed on the item inside of the item.
Hope this helps.
Since you don't know which pesticide (or herbicide) was applied to your produce/fruits, you should opt for both a regular wash, and a wash with acetic acid (vinegar).
Many pesticides are non-polar - meaning they're not soluble in water; therefore washing with plain water won't do much good for you.
I always wash the fruits under water for about a minute, even if they are organic. To remove pesticides from fruit skins, I add a teaspoon of sea salt to a litre of clean water and soak the fruits in it for about 25-30 minutes. And then rinse with clean water afterwards.
Soaking this way will remove pesticides from the skin of the fruits. Another alternative would be to soak the fruits in vinegar and water solution for about 15-20 minutes. Add one part of vinegar to 4 parts of clean water and soak fruits in it.
Note: Fruits like berries can become soggy when soaked for a longer period of time. Limit the soaking time for such porous fruits.
The best way to stay away from pesticides from fruits or vegetables is to grow your own produce. This way you can enjoy your fruits and vegetables without having to worry about the harmful chemicals and pesticides and save money too!