The NEW Dirty Dozen

You may want to think twice before buying conventional strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, peaches, celery, grapes, pears, cherries, tomatoes, sweet bell peppers and potatoes. They are the NEW additions the Environmental Working Group (EWG)’s 2017 Dirty Dozen List of the top pesticide-contaminated produce.

The EWG found that nearly 70% of samples of 48 types of conventional produce contained residues of one or more pesticides. “Eating plenty of  fruits and vegetables is essentials no matter how they’re grown, but for the items with the heaviest pesticide loads, we urge shoppers to buy organic,” says Sonya Lunder, a Senior Analyst at EWG.

Clean Eating suggests making organic as a priority when it comes to produce on the Dirty Dozen list, and buying non-organic for produce on the Clean 15 list (foods with the lowest amounts of pesticide residues), which includes sweet corn, avocado, cauliflower, and onions.

Below is the list of 48 foods which contain pesticides (from worst to best-lower numbers)

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Nectarines
  4. Apples
  5. Peaches
  6. Pears
  7. Cherries
  8. Grapes
  9. Celery
  10. Tomatoes
  11. Sweet bell peppers
  12. Potatoes
  13. Cucumbers
  14. Cherry tomatoes
  15. Lettuce
  16. Snap peas (imported)
  17. Blueberries (domestic)
  18. Hot peppers +
  19. Kale/ collard greens
  20. Blueberries (imported)
  21. Green beans (domestic)
  22. Plums
  23. Tangerines
  24. Raspberries
  25. Carrots
  26. Winter squash
  27. Oranges
  28. Summer squash*
  29. Green beans (imported)
  30. Snap peas (domestic)
  31. Bananas
  32. Green onions
  33. Watermelon
  34. Mushrooms
  35. Sweet potatoes
  36. Broccoli
  37. Grapefruit
  38. Cauliflower
  39. Cantaloupe
  40. Kiwi
  41. Honeydrew melon
  42. Eggplant
  43. Mangos
  44. Asparagus
  45. Papayas*
  46. Sweet peas frozen
  47. Onions
  48. Cabbage
  49. Pinapples
  50. Avocados
  51. Sweet corns*

+ Dirty Dozen PLUS

* A small amount of sweet corn, papaya and summer squash sold in the United States is produced from genetically modified seeds. Buy organic varieties of these crops if you want to avoid genetically modified produce.


Clean Eating

The Environmental Working Group (EWG)

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