Lots of people first go organic with dairy products, because they want to avoid synthetic hormones and not contribute to antibiotic use. For these and other reasons, organic dairy foods are a great place to start. But where to go organic next?
Avoiding the pesticides sprayed onto non-organic produce is a good next step. But when you can't buy all organic fruits and veggies all the time, how do you get the greatest benefit from your organic dollar? By shopping with the Environmental Working Group (EWG) "Pocket Guide to Pesticides," which lists "The Dirty Dozen" and "The Clean Fifteen."
Some non-organic fruits and vegetables are more heavily laden with pesticide residues—this is the non-organic produce you most want to avoid. Topping the EWG's list of dirties are (with the dirtiest listed first): apples, bell peppers, domestic blueberries, celery and cucumbers. If only some of the produce in your cart is going to be organic, make it these and the other Dirty Dozen foods.
"The Clean Fifteen" are 15 fruits and veggies that tend to have lighter pesticide residues in their non-organic forms. If you’re buying only a few organic foods, you can feel okay about buying the non-organic versions of produce on the clean list, especially the stuff at the top.
And you don’t have to memorize all of this. Just download and print a copy of the EWG guide and keep it in your purse or wallet. Click to download the guide now.