We have all heard of the famous 1967 movie “The Dirty Dozen”, starring Lee Marvin, but what about the Fruit and Veg Dirty Dozen?

The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a US not-for-profit organisation, released a list in 2010 of the fruit and vegetables you must buy as certified organic, as these are the produce items that are most heavily sprayed with toxic pesticides.

With Australians being recommended to eat 5 serves of vegetables and 2 serves of fruit a day, (National Health & Medical Research Council Guidelines), we thought we’d better share this list with our Goodness followers, to help reduce your exposure as much as possible.

Let’s put this into perspective. If we eat only 5 serves, off the following list of produce, we would consume an average of 14 different pesticides. Yuk!

The absolute worst: 
1. Apples98% of conventional apples had pesticides
2. Celerytested positive for 57 different pesticides!
3. Strawberriesour favourite summer berry had 13 different pesticides! :(

Followed closely by:
4. Peaches
5. Spinach
6. Nectarines
7. Grapes
8. Capsicums
9. Potatoes
10. Blueberries
11. Lettuce
12. Kale

We understand that buying organic all the time can be challenging.  However you may want to adopt the above list as your not-negotiable.

Is it all bad news?! The EWG has also done a list of the top 15 “clean” products, those lowest in pesticides:
1. Onions
2. Sweet Corn
3. Pineapples
4. Avocado
5. Asparagus

Tips on buying organic produce:

  • Shop at your local grower’s market

You can pick up reasonably priced organic or conventional fresh produce, bread, nuts & seeds, grains, eggs + more! You know the produce is fresh and you can meet the farmers themselves! Even if you cannot afford organic, there are many producers there who are pesticide free, or use minimal chemicals. Find us at grower’s markets in Sydney

  • Join a buying group or co-op

Get a group of friends, family or school mothers together and form a buying group. You can register an account with organic produce suppliers in your area, buy in bulk and divide the produce amongst the group. A fabulous way to buy organic and save money!