By Holly Lebowitz Rossi
June 13, 2011

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) today released its annual "Dirty Dozen" list of the twelve fruits and vegetables that researchers find contain the highest levels of pesticide residues and are most important to buy from organic growers.  The dozen items, ranked from highest to lowest pesticide load (but all highly susceptible) are:

  • Apples
  • Celery
  • Strawberries
  • Peaches
  • Spinach
  • Nectarines (imported)
  • Grapes (imported)
  • Sweet Bell Peppers
  • Potatoes
  • Blueberries (domestic)
  • Lettuce
  • Kale/Collard Greens

The EWG also published its companion list, the "Clean 15," which catalogs fruits and vegetables that are least likely to hold onto pesticide residues if grown by non-organic methods.  Those foods are:

  • Onions
  • Sweet Corn
  • Pineapples
  • Avocado
  • Asparagus
  • Sweet Peas
  • Mangoes
  • Eggplant
  • Cantaloupe (domestic)
  • Kiwi
  • Cabbage
  • Watermelon
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Grapefruit
  • Mushrooms

Do you choose organic produce when you can, and if so do you use the Dirty Dozen as your guide?

(image via: http://travel.latimes.com/)

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