Home | Safety | Chemical | Grapes and celery - pesticide issue?

Grapes and celery - pesticide issue?

Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font

Dear Readers,

Did you know when you bite into leafy greens, you may also be getting a helping of banned pesticides?

Environmental Working Group just released its updated 2013 Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce, featuring the Dirty Dozen Plus and Clean 15.

This is the information Big Ag doesn't want you to see - but EWG works hard to make sure you know what's really in your food.

Our easy-to-use lists help you identify conventionally grown produce with the most pesticides so you can make smarter choices about what you eat.

Click here to see where grapes, celery and leafy greens end up on the list.

EWG's Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce, now in its 9th year, ranks pesticide contamination on 48 popular fruits and vegetables, based on an analysis of more than 28,000 samples tested by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and federal Food and Drug Administration. Apples top this year's Dirty Dozen list of most pesticide-contaminated produce, followed by strawberries, grapes and celery. Corn, pineapples and avocados made this year's Clean Fifteen list.

For the second year, we've expanded the Dirty Dozen list with a Plus section that highlights two crops - domestically grown summer squash and leafy greens, specifically kale and collards. While these veggies don't make the normal Dirty Dozen list, tests show they are contaminated with highly toxic pesticides like organophosphates and banned organochlorine pesticides.

What about genetically engineered fruits and veggies? They are not yet often found in the produce section of grocery stores. The genetically modified crops you're most likely to see are zucchini, Hawaiian papaya and some varieties of sweet corn. Field corn, nearly all of which is produced with genetically modified seeds, is not sold as a fresh vegetable, so it is not included in EWG's Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce. Nor is soy, another genetically engineered crop that makes its way into much processed food. Since U.S. law does not require labeling of genetically engineered produce, EWG advises people who want to avoid it to purchase the organically grown versions of these items.

EWG always recommends eating more fruits and veggies and buying them organic if you can. But sometimes organic produce can cost more or isn't available. That's why we created the Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce - so you know which fruits and vegetables have the most pesticide residues and what other produce you can buy instead to lower your exposure to potentially harmful chemicals.

Click here to see this year's updated lists!

Here's to healthy eating!


Ken Cook
President, Environmental Working Group


(Send your news to [email protected], Foodconsumer.org is part of the Infoplus.com ™ news and information network)

  • email Email to a friend
  • print Print version