The Environmental Working Group (EWG) analyzes pesticide residue testing data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration. Below are the top 12 fruits and veggies that the EWG highly recommends you purchase organic since they are the most contaminated and most sprayed fruits and vegetables (lower numbers = more pesticides).
EWG’S 2019 DIRTY DOZEN™
EWG’S 2019 CLEAN FIFTEEN™
The Clean Fifteen is least likely to contain pesticide residues and includes the following:
2. Sweet corn
4. Frozen sweet peas
15. Honeydew melons
* The most surprising news from the USDA tests reveals that the popular health food kale is among the most contaminated fruits and vegetables. More than 92 percent of kale samples had two or more pesticide residues detected, and a single sample could contain up to 18 different residues. The most frequently detected pesticide, found on nearly 60 percent of kale samples, was Dacthal, or DCPA – classified by the Environmental Protection Agency since 1995 as a possible human carcinogen, and prohibited for use in Europe since 2009.
* Avocados and sweet corn were the cleanest. Less than 1 percent of samples showed any detectable pesticides. More than 70 percent of Clean Fifteen fruit and vegetable samples had no pesticide residues. With the exception of cabbage, all other produce on the Clean Fifteen tested positive for less than four pesticides. Multiple pesticide residues are extremely rare on Clean Fifteen vegetables. Only 6 percent of Clean Fifteen fruit and vegetable samples had two or more pesticides.