Leafy Greens are Leafy Vegetables

Leafy greens are leafy vegetables that are an important part of a healthy diet. Usually, have crisp green leaves and stalks, and should be eaten raw or lightly cooked to preserve the nutrients.

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Popular types of leafy greens include

  • lettuce
  • arugula
  • bok choy
  • spinach

Because leafy are often eaten raw, they can be a source of food poisoning.

By making sure they are properly handled, washed, prepared, and stored, you can enjoy the health benefits of leafy greens and help prevent food poisoning for yourself and your family.


  • Look for leaves that are crisp. Avoid ones that are wilted or brown.
  • If buying ready-to-eat, bagged, pre-washed leafy greens, make sure they are refrigerated.


  • Store leafy in the refrigerator for up to seven days. Discard when leaves become wilted or brown.
  • Bagged, ready-to-eat, pre-washed leafy greens should also be refrigerated and used before the expiration date.


Washing your hands and following proper cleaning techniques can help you avoid cross-contamination and prevent the spread of food poisoning.

  • Use warm water and soap to thoroughly wash all utensils, countertops, and cutting boards before and after handling leafy. 

Did you know?

Every year, more than 4 million Canadians get food poisoning. Many of these illnesses could be prevented by following proper food handling and preparation techniques.


Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds, before and after handling leafy.

  1. Discard outer leaves.
  2. Wash your leafy greens under fresh, cool running water. There is no need to use anything other than water to wash leafy. Washing them gently with water is as effective as using produce cleansers.
  3. Keep rinsing until all of the dirt has been washed away.

Don’t soak leafy greens in a sink full of water. They can become contaminated by bacteria in the sink.

Ready-to-eat leafy greens

Ready-to-eat leafy sold in sealed packages and labeled as washed, pre-washed or triple-washed, do not need to be washed again.

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