Environmental group publishes a list of the 12 most pesticide laden produce

The Environmental Working Group (a non-profit but likely partisan environmental group) released a “study” citing the 12 fruits and vegetables most contaminated by pesticides and the 15 least contaminated.  This seems like a cross between real science and “junk” science.  The methodology used by the Environmental Working Group seems fairly sound; to take a decade of FDA scientific data (which I’m inclined to trust) and data mine it to determine the “most contaminated” and “least contaminated” produce.  That’s a good start, but this is the point where real science would be helpful.  Just because pesticides showed up in apples and lettuce, does that make them both equally damaging?  Are some pesticides demonstrably worse than others to consume?  This list is a good starting point, but I feel there’s a lot of follow up research lacking.

My own opinion is that I really don’t want to be the canary in the mine when it comes to determining what level of pesticides in a person’s diet is safe vs toxic.  Especially now that we’re changing our family’s eating to consume fruits and veggies at each meal.  Instead, I’ll err on the side of caution and try to get as much of our produce as possible from pesticide-free sources.  For those who cannot source all of their food from pesticide-free sources, this list may be helpful in determining which items are more important to buy “clean” than others…


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