When to Buy Organic Fruits and Vegetables

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has created The Shoppers Guide to Pesticides which ranks the 50 most popular fruits and vegetables for their overall pesticide contamination.  This data is compiled from over 96,000 tests conducted between the years 2000 – 2008 by the USDA and FDA for pesticide residue on fruits and vegetables.  According to the EWG, you can cut your exposure to pesticides by 80% by not eating (or only eating organic) of the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables.

The WORST: Celery, peaches, strawberries, apples, blueberries, nectarines, bell peppers, spinach, kale, cherries, potatoes & imported grapes.

The BEST: Onions, avocado, sweet corn, pineapple, mango, sweet peas, asparagus, kiwi, cabbage, eggplant, cantaloupe, watermelon, grapefruit, sweet potato, honeydew melon.

-How much of a difference is there between these two lists?  It is estimated that those who eat five fruits and vegetables from “The WORST” list are exposed to 10 pesticides a day, while those who eat their five fruits and vegetables from “The BEST” list are only exposed to only 2 pesticides a day

-What if you wash and peel your fruits and veggies – doesn’t that help?  Nearly all the studies on which this research is based tested produce after it had been washed and/or peeled.

A few more stats to ponder:

-Peaches had been treated with more pesticides than any other produce, registering combinations of up to 67 different chemicals. Strawberries were next, with 53 pesticides and apples with 47.

-Nearly 85 percent of celery samples contained multiple pesticides, followed by sweet bell peppers (61.5 percent) and collard greens (53.2 percent).

Source: http://www.foodnews.org/methodology.php

See the complete list of fruits and vegetables here:  http://www.foodnews.org/fulllist.php

Download the Shoppers Guide here: http://www.foodnews.org/walletguide.php

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