Every year, the Environmental Working Group publishes a list of the 12 fruits and vegetables that have been found to contain the highest levels of pesticide residue. These fruits and veggies have been aptly dubbed: The Dirty Dozen.
Most of the fruits and vegetables that made the list have thin skin, so they’re more vulnerable to the chemicals used to keep pests away from non-organic produce. If possible, buy these fruits and vegetables organic or from a Certified Farmer’s Market.
To safely rinse fruits and vegetables combine in a spray bottle, equal amounts of white distilled vinegar and water. Spray produce with solution, rub lightly and rinse with clear water. For softer produce, add equal parts vinegar and water to a large bowl, add produce and allow to soak for 1 minute, rinse with water.
Dirty Dozen for 2013:
- Cherry Tomatoes
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Nectarines – Imported
- Kale/Collard Greens
The Environmental Working Group also publishes a list of the fruits and vegetables that have been found to contain the least amount of pesticide residue.
The Clean 15:
- Sweet Corn
- Sweet peas – Frozen
- Sweet potatoes
Here is a video from Dr. Andrew Weil that discusses the lists and pesticides in food in more detail:
Written by Joanna Vilim