Remember when eating fruits and vegetables was actually the healthy thing to do? I'm really starting to miss those days. Because another food safety report is out today to scare you out of shopping, this time from the folks over at the Environmental Working Group.
I keep thinking the move toward organic in the market would have forced regular produce sellers to step up their game. It's the lesson of supply and demand, right? Consumers are demanding organic, so the supply should be adjusted. But the EWG is saying no way: our favorite eats are still loaded down with pesticides. If anything, it looks like things have actually gotten worse -- they had to up their "buy organic" produce list from the Dirty Dozen to the Dirty Dozen Plus. Just check out the highlights on what to avoid:
Green Beans: One of two veggies added to the "Dirty Dozen" list of produce the EWG has always recommended you buy from an organic grower, green beans were found to be "commonly contaminated" with a type of insecticide that's dangerous to the nervous system.
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Kale & Collard Greens: These were also added to the Dirty Dozen list, making it the Dirty Dozen Plus ... for the same reason as green beans.
Apples: Experts have long suggested these should be purchased from organic growers, so you'd think apple growers would be trying to fight off the challenge, right? Wrong. The new report claims 98 percent of conventional apples have detectable levels of pesticides.
Nectarines: There wasn't a single nectarine in the sample pile that didn't have some kind of pesticide residue.
Lettuce: Mmm, want some pesticide with your salad? The report claims there were 78 different pesticides on lettuce samples.
Blueberries: The report shows domestic blueberries were positive for 42 different pesticide residues. Eww!
Grapes: They may be tiny, but grape samples came in with a whopping 64 different kinds of chemicals.
Celery: On a single sample, the EWG says there were 13 different pesticides.
Strawberries: The same thing that happened with a single sample of celery occurred when researchers checked a single strawberry sample: 13 different pesticides.
That's just a smattering of the list -- you can check the EWG for their new "Dirty Dozen Plus" if you want to know what they recommend buying from the organic shelves -- but I have to say the fact that these pesticides continue to show up scares me more than the chemicals themselves! It means that the companies don't really care what we shoppers have to say.
Don't we live in a consumer-driven society? Shouldn't growers be listening to our demands for healthy food?
What do you think of the findings of this report? Will it change the way you shop for fruits and vegetables?
Image via srqpix/Flickr
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