2023 Guide to Non-Toxic Produce

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Reduce toxins in your food & save money on organic produce with these handy guides…

We all know the cost of food is high these days, and while buying organic is always a great option, prices remain steeper than most conventionally grown produce. However, when it comes to choosing which foods to buy conventionally grown, there are a few things to consider.

Recently, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) came out with their 2023 Clean Fifteen and Dirty Dozen lists, and they can be pretty handy when you’re cruising through the produce section and trying to save some cash.

These lists are based on the latest data from the Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration, and the EWG analyzed a whopping 46,569 samples of 46 different fruits and vegetables. The goal is to identify which ones have the most agricultural chemicals that could potentially be harmful to our health and the environment. The “Dirty Dozen” is where you should lean towards buying organic, while the “Clean Fifteen” are considered safer to buy conventionally grown.

Since the EWG updates these lists every year, there are usually a few changes from the previous year. This time around, blueberries and green beans made it into the Dirty Dozen. These products were found to have high levels of pesticides known as organophosphate insecticides, which can mess with our nervous system. On top of that, over 6% of green bean samples had residues of a toxic pesticide called acephate, which has actually been banned by the EPA for over a decade now!

On the flip side, cantaloupe got bumped from the Clean Fifteen, but fear not, because carrots joined the party instead.

With the exception of cherries, over 50 different pesticides were detected on every type of crop on the Dirty Dozen list!

As you can see, it’s a good idea to choose organic when buying these fruits and veggies:

2023 Dirty Dozen List 

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Kale, collard, and mustard greens
  4. Peaches
  5. Pears
  6. Nectarines
  7. Apples
  8. Grapes
  9. Bell & hot peppers
  10. Cherries
  11. Blueberries
  12. Green beans

On the other hand, almost 65 percent of Clean Fifteen fruit and vegetable samples had no detectable pesticide residues. If you’re a big fan of avocado toast, you’ll be happy to learn that less than 2 percent of conventionally grown avocados tested showed detectable pesticides!

2023 Clean Fifteen List

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet corn
  3. Pineapple
  4. Onions
  5. Papaya
  6. Sweet peas (frozen)
  7. Asparagus
  8. Honeydew melon
  9. Kiwi
  10. Cabbage
  11. Mushrooms
  12. Mangoes
  13. Sweet Potatoes
  14. Watermelon
  15. Carrots

For more in-depth information about this year’s results, you can check out EWG’s 2023 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce report. You’ll learn about the potential dangers of pesticide consumption, as well as some additional interesting facts from their in-depth testing. You can even download printable versions of each list for easy reference while shopping.

While food’s not cheap these days, you can still eat healthy by including plenty of fruits and veggies in your diet! Save some money by buying conventionally grown for the Clean Fifteen and if you have a bit of extra money to spend on organic food, spend it on those fruits and vegetables in the Dirty Dozen list. This way, your grocery shopping will be healthier for both you and your wallet!


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