Every year, the Environmental Working Group, in their Shoppers Guide to Pesticides releases their Dirty Dozen: a comprehensive list of the food most likely to be contaminated by pesticides.
Food for Thought
According to the EWG methodology, "You can lower your pesticide consumption by nearly four-fifths by avoiding the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables and instead eating the least contaminated produce, according to EWG calculations. When you eat the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables, you’ll be exposed to an average of 10 pesticides a day. When you choose fresh produce from the 15 least contaminated fruits and vegetables, you’ll consume fewer than 2 pesticides per day."
Best to go organic for these 12 fruits and veggies:
3. strawberries (although this is a US list, I know someone who works at a strawberry grower in Kumeu and guess what....they grow their own!)
5. blueberries (we are so lucky to have Omaha Organic Blueberries in steady supply at our grocery stores, no reason to not eat organic blueberries in NZ)
7. sweet bell peppers (capsicum)
12. grapes (non-USA)
It is interesting to note that nearly all the studies on which this guide is based tested produce after it had been rinsed or peeled.
Reading stuff like this highlights the importance of being aware of how different life is for our children that it was for us. Small changes really do add up to a better quality of life for our families, you can discover more in A Wake-Up Story that I posted a little while ago.
Come back tomorrow for the good news: the list of those fruits and veggies that are least likely to be contaminated by pesticide residue, The Clean 15.