Most people would prefer to buy organic produce but the costs can be crazy! For several years I have relied on the "Dirty Dozen & Clean 15" list put out by the Environmental Working Group. The list gets updated each year based on current trends in farming practices and they just updated the list today!
What are the Dirty Dozen and the Clean Fifteen?
The "Dirty Dozen": if you have to make choices in what organic produce you are going to buy, these are the ones that you should spend the extra money to buy organic as they are the ones with the highest amount of pesticides.
The "Clean Fifteen": these are the ones that have the lowest level of pesticides. You are generally fine buying the "regular version" of these items!
So without further ado, here is the 2011 lists in the order from worst to best.
2011 Dirty Dozen
- Nectarines (Imported)
- Grapes (Imported)
- Sweet bell peppers
- Kale/collard greens
2011 Clean Fifteen
- Sweet corn
- Sweet peas
- Cantaloupe (Domestic)
- Sweet potatoes
Changes in the Dirty Dozen List from 2010 to 2011
- Apples are now #1 on the Dirty Dozen list. Last year they were #4, making me wonder what is going on in the apple-growing industry!
- Spinach made it's debut on the 2010 Dirty Dozen List at #8 and now it is up to #5.....yikes!
- Cherries were on the 2010 Dirty Dozen list, but it looks like they have been dropped for 2011.
- Lettuce had been dropped from the 2010 Dirty Dozen list and now it is back.
Don't want to have to memorize these lists? You can download a printable copy of the 2011 Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen!