We have reached a point in history where it has now become all but impossible to go grocery shopping without a user’s safety manual.
Just as seafood now comes with its own pocket guide that advises the consumer of the sustainability of his or her theoretical purchases, produce has its very own guide to warn shoppers of the pesticide load carried by the leafy greens and fresh fruit that the USDA wants us to eat in ever greater quantities.
The 2011 guide, which was just released by the Environmental Working Group, divides produce into the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15. The former group contains the most pesticides, and the latter group the least. This year’s worst offender? The apple. It’s followed chronologically by celery, strawberries, peaches, and spinach. Consuming five servings of Dirty Dozen fruit and vegetables, the EWG helpfully informs us, “would cause you to consume an average of 14 different pesticides a day.”
At the other end of the spectrum, onions, sweet corn, pineapples, avocado, and asparagus are the least likely to make your unborn children grow gills. On the one hand, the fact that no samples of onion or corn had more than one pesticide is great news. On the other, “an onion a day” just doesn’t have a particularly appetizing ring to it.
[Via The Huffington Post]
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