Here are answers to some of the most common questions about the selection, care and preparation of fresh vegetables.
If you don’t see your question answered here, please e-mail us.
Where can I find Tanimura & Antle products?
Our Facebook page has a list of stores by state for your convenience. Click here to view.
Should I wash my produce?
Yes, Tanimura & Antle produce is not washed and ready to eat. Our products are grown and packaged outside directly in the field at the peak of freshness.
What’s the best way to wash lettuce?
When preparing any fresh produce, begin with clean hands. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water before and after preparation. Wash all produce thoroughly under running water before eating, cutting or cooking. Washing fruits and vegetables with soap or detergent or using commercial produce washes is not necessary. Dry produce with a clean cloth towel or paper towel to further reduce bacteria that may be present.*
*Source: Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Should I wash my produce before I store away?
For best results don’t wash produce until you are ready to consume as it may cause the produce to age more quickly. You may cut and rinse one day ahead and store for even quicker prep. To store lettuce after it’s been washed, dry it off completely and store it in an airtight container in the crisper or produce drawer.
What's the best way to store my produce?
Store fresh vegetables in the crisper or produce drawer of your refrigerator immediately after purchasing. The ideal storage temperature is 34°F to 38°F, so check your fridge to make sure it’s within that range. Keep it cold and dry.
How do I choose the best fresh produce?
Prior to purchasing, always inspect fresh produce items to make sure they are not discolored, wilted, mushy or soggy. Before consuming fresh produce, visually check the product for signs of decay, excessive wilting, rotting or slime. These are your best indicators that the product is past its best if used by date.
What is ethylene and does it really affect the storage life of my produce?
Ethylene is a natural plant hormone that affects the growth, development, ripening, and aging of all plants. It’s released in small quantities by most fruits and vegetables, which accelerates the ripening process.
Different types of fruits and vegetables release different levels of ethylene. Fruits (bananas, apples, tomatoes) typically give off more ethylene than vegetables, so it’s important to keep fruits and vegetables in separate drawers to avoid discoloration, bruising/spotting and decay. Lettuce is particularly susceptible to ethylene, and too much of it will cause wilting and decay.
What is E. coli and how is it spread?
E. coli is the name of a type of bacteria that lives in your intestines and in the intestines of animals. Although most types of E. coli are harmless, some types can make you sick. Learn more about E. coli here.
What precautions can I take to prevent food-borne illness at home?
To minimize the spread of food-borne illness in the home, care should be taken in the handling of food, check out steps here.
What's the best way to wash Tanimura & Antle Living lettuce?
De-leaf by gently hand-removing each leaf from the root, rinse and dry in colander. Use only what you need for each serving, leaving the roots intact.
Why are the roots attached to the Tanimura & Antle Living Lettuce?
Tanimura & Antle Living lettuce is grown on water which helps transport nutrients to the plant. It is fully mature product when packed directly into a clamshell. Roots attached is an option provided to retail customers.
What is the green stuff at the base of the head/roots of the Tanimura & Antle Living Lettuce?
The green moss like substance is the actual foam substrate used when growing the Tanimura & Antle Living Lettuce. This foam substrate is used to hold each seed and seedling in place while growing. Once the seed sprouts into a seedling, it is then transplanted onto rafts and placed in the water pools. This is not meant to be eaten.
Do you spray pesticides on your Greenhouse Grown produce?
Tanimura & Antle Living lettuce is grown in greenhouses that are equipped with screens to keep insects and other pests away, reducing the need to spray.
Can I plant the root of the Tanimura & Antle Living Lettuce?
Tanimura & Antle Living lettuce is fully mature when harvested and will not continue to grow after harvesting.
What's the best way to prepare Tanimura & Antle Artisan® Lettuces?
Please visit our Artisan Lettuce website to learn simple preparation tips for Artisan Lettuce. Click here to view.
Are the Tanimura & Antle Artisan® Lettuces baby lettuces?
No. Each variety of the Artisan Lettuce is fully mature, but these are petite varieties so they are small compact heads. The mature leaves of Artisan lettuce give this lettuce full flavor and body, similar to larger heads of lettuce.
What are the 3 varieties of Tanimura & Antle Artisan® Lettuces?
Artisan Lettuces are offered in 3 lettuce varieties: Petite Gem, Petite Tango and Petite Oak. Petite Gem is a firm, crunchy lettuce with a mild sweet flavor. Petite Tango is a curly leaf lettuce, similar to mild arugula or endive. Petite Oak is a tender, mellow variety that is easy on the palate.
I bought Tanimura & Antle Lettuce [iceberg, romaine, etc.] and it looks "rusty" inside. How did this happen?
A "rusty" looking interior can happen if the product is not properly refrigerated on the road from the field to the grocery store. Simply cut away the discolored portion, discard it and enjoy the product as you normally would.
Once harvested, lettuce is taken to the cooler to chill and reduce its temperature to refrigeration temperatures, allowing it to stay fresher longer. Once it leaves the cooler, its temperature may rise to a non-refrigeration temperature – the truck may not have maintained proper temperatures, the storage temperature from truck to store may have been too high, or the product may not have been kept at a proper temperature in the store itself. Whatever the reason, once its temperature rises, and the water within the lettuce’s cells experience an increase in temperature, it can begin to decompose and rust may appear.
I noticed some dirt on my fresh produce. Is that normal?
Yes, since most produce is grown in dirt, some can make it into the actual plant. Simply rinse your produce under lukewarm water and dry with a clean cloth towel or paper towel.
Excessive dirt is simply a product of rainy weather; when it rains, the dirt splashes up and may become trapped between the leaves or buds. The heavier the rain, the more dirt the vegetable may have.
I cut open my lettuce [broccoli, etc.] and I saw a bug. What should I do?
Because our produce is harvested and packaged right in the field for maximum freshness, some insects may still be present when you get your produce home. These insects are harmless and can be removed by rinsing produce under lukewarm water and drying it with a clean cloth towel or paper towel.
Are Tanimura & Antle products irradiated, sprayed with preservatives or genetically modified?
No, our produce is not irradiated, sprayed with any preservatives or genetically modified. They are grown using the highest quality seeds available, harvested at optimal freshness, packed and chilled to remove heat from the product, and then shipped directly to our retailer partners.
Is the packaging recyclable?
Yes, all the packaging materials are recyclable.
Where is the “Use by Date” located?
Since Tanimura & Antle products are not a processed product we are required to only place a born date (date harvested) on the corrugated shipping box. We may place a Use By Date on individual units if the store group requests it.
Are Tanimura & Antle products sprayed with pesticides?
Tanimura & Antle uses an integrated pest management program a strategic approach for managing pest issues. It’s used to either avoid or at least reduce the application of chemical agents. This includes planting beneficial plants that attract helpful bugs to keep pests in check. In addition, careful monitoring of weather patterns and careful planning of watering schedules protect against the infiltration of pests. Because of this, our use of pesticides is kept below what is currently tolerated by the USDA.