Chefmax’s Blog

Exploring the Culinary Lifestyle

EWG’s FoodNews :: Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides

Posted by chefmax on March 20, 2009

Not a full list but still a good place to start. 



Why Should You Care About Pesticides? 

The growing consensus among scientists is that small doses of 

pesticides and other chemicals can cause lasting damage to human 

health, especially during fetal development and early childhood. 

Scientists now know enough about the long-term consequences of 

ingesting these powerful chemicals to advise that we minimize our 

consumption of pesticides. 

What’s the Difference? 

EWG research has found that people who eat the 12 most contami- 

nated fruits and vegetables consume an average of 10 pesticides a 

day. Those who eat the 15 least contaminated conventionally-grown 

fruits and vegetables ingest fewer than 2 pesticides daily. The Guide 

helps consumers make informed choices to lower their dietary 

pesticide load. 

Will Washing and Peeling Help? 

Nearly all the studies used to create these lists assume that people 

rinse or peel fresh produce. Rinsing reduces but does not eliminate 

pesticides. Peeling helps, but valuable nutrients often go down the 

drain with the skin. The best approach: eat a varied diet, rinse all 

produce  and buy organic when possible. 

How Was This Guide Developed? 

EWG analysts have developed the Guide based on data from nearly 

87,000 tests for pesticide residues in produce conducted between 

2000 and 2007 and collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture 

and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. You can find a detailed 

description of the criteria EWG used to develop these rankings and 

the complete list of fruits and vegetables tested at our dedicated 



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