For gardeners who have been growing their own vegetables for aeons it’s no news flash to them that we should be eating organically grown produce rather than those caked in pesticides. Yet the dilemma for most of us is the limitation of what we can grow successfully in our veggie patches and which vegetables need to be sourced from the grocers.
Our limitations are guided by our climate, seasons, water availability and even soil type. So, to expect that we could all grow 100% of our vegetable intake is a tad idealistic. The compromise comes when we have to source fruit and veggies and we’re unsure as to their growing pedigree.
At the top of the list of fears that we hold when buying produce is how much pesticide has been used to nurture each item to maturity. Fortunately most of the work has been done for us by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) who after completing 43,000 tests between 2000 – 2004 have compiled a list of the 12 Foods that MUST be bought or grown organically. Here they are;
- Sweet bell peppers
- Grapes (imported)
Not surprisingly all of these items are eaten without peeling, bar the potatoes. So it makes sense that consuming these fruit and vegetables without careful washing can be detrimental to our health. However, the report recommends that washing isn’t enough and residue pesticides on these items are still evident. It seems then that growing, or sourcing, these food items organically is a much safer option.
While the above list are the twelve worst foodstuffs to buy without being organically grown the report also shows that the 12 fruit and vegetables listed below could possibly be bought from any grocer without too much risk from pesticides. Here they are;
- Sweet peas (frozen)
- Sweet corn (frozen)
Unlike the first list it’s interesting to point out that most of these items require peeling or shelling before consumption. Apart from the broccoli, eggplant and asparagus the other fruit and veggies are protected from pesticide residual by their casings.