Why is Produce sprayed with water in the Grocery Store?

According to Merriam Webster, a grocery store is a store that sells food and household supplies. We’re sure we can all relate to this statement but this article is going to help you understand just more than that. Let’s learn ‘Why is Produce sprayed with water in the Grocery Store?’.

Why is Produce sprayed with water in the Grocery Store?

A supermarket is a synonym of a Grocery store.

A grocery store as mentioned above refers to a store that sells food and household items but on a smaller scale compared to that of the supermarket.

Though the supermarket operates on a slightly larger scale than that of a grocery store, it can not be compared to a Hypermarket.

Interesting facts about Produce

The IFSAC food categorization divided produce into fruits and vegetables, vegetables are one of the healthiest foods we can consume.

Fruits contain natural sugar and many other beneficial nutrients, so they are a healthy addition to a daily diet. 

Produce are farm-produced crops including fruits and vegetables, these products are usually fresh and in the same state as when they were harvested on the farm.

Produce are usually marked with small stickers that bear price look-up codes, these codes are used to aid check-out and inventory control where they are sold.

Produce also refers to the section of the stores where fruits and vegetables are kept.

Reasons why Produce is sprayed

Before harvesting, vegetables and farm produce are hydrated through the biological process called “Osmosis”.

It involves the movement of molecules from a region of higher concentration to lower concentration until the concentrations become equal on the other side of the membrane.  

Since water remains a vital ingredient for some biological processes like the transport and absorption of nutrients, water is sprayed on produce in grocery stores to keep them fresh and attractive.

The spraying of produce has also been tagged as a marketing ploy by the stores that sell them. 

It is argued that after produce is misted, it, in turn, adds residual weight to the farm produce bought. Heavier produce equals more profit for the store. 

The Misting System

The process of spraying these farm products with water is tagged as ” Misting”.

The misting of produce by these stores is to help it remain hydrated and maintain its freshness.

Without misting, the produce would wilt and lose its freshness, as well as its crispness, which in turn affects the overall nutrient value.

The misting of farm produce over time was made automatic across a good number of grocery stores. 

At preset intervals, a little water is sprinkled on the fruits and vegetables.

As widely practiced as the automated misting system is, a good number of grocery stores still do the spraying of produce manually. At certain times an individual goes around the store to spray the produce.

Strong points of Misting

Produce like humans have needs. Do you remember that strong urge you get in the morning for a glass of water right after you wake up or randomly in the middle of the night, I’m sure you do?

Produce have those too, amazing!!!

The produce while still planted are very much capable of meeting this need themselves, but after they are uprooted become dependent on others for this.

Without misting the produce will rapidly dry out, become wilted, there would also be a drastic reduction in weight of such produce.

Store owners are aware that customers are more inclined to choose farm produce that appears misted and green rather than produce that appears all dried out and dying.

 I know I wouldn’t want a wilted carrot for my salad dressing!!!

Burdens of Misting

Just like there is the essential need for balance in all aspects of life, it is also required in the aspect of misting.

While misting of produce is beneficial, it can also be bad for produce if not properly proportioned. Excess water leads to the growth of microorganisms which causes mold and rot, this damages the shelf life of produce.

Consumption of produce with mold and rot is equally dangerous to the health of people who consume them.

Produce should be sprayed regularly but not overly.

Farm Produce that is mostly misted

It is important to note that while the misting of produce is done by stores, not all farm produce is misted.

Examples of farm produce that are major beneficiaries of the misting system:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflowers
  • Carrots
  • All types of lettuce
  • Fresh herbs (e.g, basil, parsley, sage)
  • Beets

Examples of farm produce that is usually not misted by stores:

  • Potatoes
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Chili peppers
  • Winter squash

These types of farm produce have skins that retain water naturally, misting them would lead to spoilage. 


A  lot of produce is delivered miles away from the farms on which they were planted and harvested, this causes a lot of strain on the produce.

Produce is sprayed with water to keep the freshness and quality of the produce, it helps to preserve the shelf life as well.

  1. What is sprayed on produce at the grocery store?

Water. Yes, that’s right, 

Water is what is sprayed on produce being sold in stores.

  1. Are all farm produce sprayed?

No, not all the farm produce being sold is misted or sprayed with water.

  1. Is it good for farm produce to be sprayed?

Yes, spraying of farm produce helps to retain their freshness.

  1. Are all farm produce sold in Pounds?

No, though a majority of produce is sold in pound, some produce is sold per unit.

Why is Produce sprayed with water in the Grocery Store?

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