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Latest Pesticide Analysis of Common Fruits and Vegetables

In late 2006, the Environmental Working Group released their latest report on the average pesticide content of common fruits and vegetables.

Many different studies that have been done with animals have found that exposure to pesticides can increase the risk of developing various types of cancer, nervous system dysfunction, and reproductive problems.

Pregnant women, nursing mothers, and young children should do their very best to minimize their exposure to pesticides and other environmental toxins.

Key findings from the Environmental Working Group's latest study are as follows:

1. The six fruits that consistently have the lowest levels of pesticide residues are avocados, pineapples, mangoes, kiwi, bananas, and papaya.

2. The six vegetables that consistently have the lowest levels of pesticide residues are onions, sweet corn, asparagus, sweet peas, cabbage, and broccoli.

3. The seven fruits that consistently have the highest levels of pesticide residues are peaches, apples, nectarines, strawberries, cherries, pears, and grapes that are imported from outside the United States and Canada.

4. The five vegetables that consistently have the highest levels of pesticide residues are sweet bell peppers, celery, spinach, lettuce, and potatoes.

While it is unrealistic for most of us to eat only organic produce 100 percent of the time, we can use the results of this study to guide us in choosing to buy organic varieties of those fruits and vegetables that consistently rank high in pesticide content.

What follows is a complete list of all 43 fruits and vegetables that were evaluated for pesticide content and their rankings:

RANK

FRUIT OR VEGGIE

SCORE

1 (worst)

Peaches

100 (highest pesticide load)

2

Apples

89

3

Sweet Bell Peppers

86

4

Celery

85

5

Nectarines

84

6

Strawberries

82

7

Cherries

75

8

Pears

65

9

Grapes - Imported

65

10

Spinach

60

11

Lettuce

59

12

Potatoes

58

13

Carrots

57

14

Green Beans

53

15

Hot Peppers

53

16

Cucumbers

52

17

Raspberries

47

18

Plums

45

19

Grapes - Domestic

43

20

Oranges

42

21

Grapefruit

40

22

Tangerine

38

23

Mushrooms

37

24

Cantaloupe

34

25

Honeydew Melon

31

26

Tomatoes

30

27

Sweet Potatoes

30

28

Watermelon

28

29

Winter Squash

27

30

Cauliflower

27

31

Blueberries

24

32

Papaya

21

33

Broccoli

18

34

Cabbage

17

35

Bananas

16

36

Kiwi

14

37

Sweet peas - frozen

11

38

Asparagus

11

39

Mango

9

40

Pineapples

7

41

Sweet Corn - frozen

2

42

Avocado

1

43 (best)

Onions

1 (lowest pesticide load)

 
 

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Super Helpful

Very easy to read/understand. I've seen similar articles but none as straight forward. Thanks!

 

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