‘The Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce’, published by the Environmental Working Group, helps consumers determine which fruits and vegetables have the most pesticide residues and are the most important to buy organic. From what I can gather the EWG reviews their ‘Dirty Dozen’ and ‘Clean Fifteen’ annually.
If, like me, you really want to buy everything organic but your wallet just can’t take the hit then you’ll find the guide valuable. It helps you make informed decisions on what to buy organic and gives you peace of mind that is some produce is really ok to buy in its conventional form.
The 2013 ‘dirty dozen’
- Cherry tomatoes
- Sweet bell peppers
- Kale & collard greens
No doubt you’ve noticed this dozen is actually 14. That’s because in 2013 items 13 and 14 were added.
And here’s the 2013 ‘clean fifteen’
- Sweet corn
- Sweet peas
- Sweet potatoes
As the EWG makes clear you can reduce your exposure to pesticides by avoiding the most contaminated fruits and vegetables and choosing a diet rich in the ‘clean fifteen’. It’s really that simple.
A word of caution
Do note that these lists are based on American produce and conditions. If you live in Australia, or otherwise outside of the US, then don’t take this information as gospel – but rather as a useful guide.
- Australia proudly boasts the largest surface area of certified organic land in the whole world.
- Of all Australian states Queensland has the most certified organic land. And New South Wales has the highest number of certified organic businesses.
Source: Australian Organic Market Report 2012
More about the EWG
I recently came across the ‘Environmental Working Group’. The EWG is a Washington based organisation that’s on a mission to conduct research that changes the way consumers, businesses and governments behave – by inspiring them to take action that promotes our health and environment. Check out their website at ewg.org, or follow them on Twitter @ewg.
By Feast Wisely
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