Is it important to wash fruit before eating? Of course, the answer is “yes.” According to the National Health Service:
It is always advisable to wash all fruit and vegetables before you eat them to ensure they are clean and to help remove bacteria from the outside.
Similar advice has been around for a long time. According to a 1920 home economics textbook:
Even oranges, grapefruit, lemons, bananas, and melons, whose skins are to be discarded, should be washed and wiped to remove surface dirt. Small fruits such as grapes and berries should be thoroughly rinsed just before serving; they should never be allowed to stand in water.
Household Arts for Home and School (1920) by Anna M. Cooley and Wilhelmina H. Spohr