Where do your favorite fruits or veggies rank with pesticides?

EWG logoSince 2010, we’ve reported the top Worst and Best lists of fruit and veggie pesticide residue from the Environmental Working Group (EWG). It’s that time of year again – and you may be surprised (again) as to what’s now higher up on the worst list and what got a bit better.

Apples, for example, moved from # 1 to #2 while peaches moved from #2 to #4. Strawberries, however, moved up the Dirty list from #4 to #1. Celery, which in 2010 was #1, moved this year from #6 to #5 and spinach inched from #7 to #8.

Clearly, Big Ag isn’t doing such a great job when it comes to reducing pesticide use. Its mainly incremental changes doesn’t provide consumers with encouraging news.

EWG’s list goes from the top (worst) pesticide residued to the least )the higher #’s mean less residue). That give you choices.

And there is hope. EWG also published it’s “Clean 15” list of 2016. Again, there are some surprises here, even for this writer. This a list of produce expected to have the least amount of pesticide residue.

 Does this mean you have to completely change how you shop? That you must now only buy organic produce? No. BUT… buying more organic produce will definitely be a healthier choice.

It may be wise to reorganize how you shop, shifting to organic choices for those at the top of the “Worst” list and non-organic ones for those towards the bottom or the “Clean” list.

Another useful change would be to use a good quality (organic) veggie produce wash product at home when you wash your produce. It’s important to remember that most pesticide residue DOESN’T WASH OFF with water alone. A good veggie wash product will lift it off and leave the produce with a different clean feel – one you’d find if you brought it in from your own organic garden.

The bottom line is that as consumers we need to be more aware than ever when making food purchases. What you don’t know can mean making very unhealthy choices for you and your family. An educated consumer is a smart shopper. And that only benefits you and your family.

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