Every year the Environmental Working Group, a non-profit organization specializing in the research and advocacy for clean food and water, comes out with a list of the top 12 most pesticide-contaminated (aka “dirtiest”) fruits and vegetables as well as the top 15 least contaminated (aka “cleanest”) fruits and vegetables.
This year strawberries were the worst pesticide offenders with the highest levels of residue. The EWG stated, “Ninety-nine percent of strawberries have pesticide residues, and up to 23 different pesticides were found on a single strawberry!”
Sadly this year kale was added to the most contaminated produce list. According to the EWG “Nearly 60 percent of kale samples sold in the U.S. tested positive for dacthal, a possible cancer-causing pesticide prohibited in Europe that can also cause harm to the lungs, liver, kidney and thyroid.”
The cleanest fruit this year was avocado, with the least amount of pesticide residue. Followed by sweet corn, pineapple and frozen sweet peas.
When buying produce, purchasing organic is best. However, this may not always be financially feasible. So save money when it comes to buying avocados and purchase them conventionally grown. However, when it comes to the foods on the dirty dozen list, do your best to buy them organic.