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Pesticide Residues in Produce

May 5, 2008

"Dirty Dozen"

produce with the most residues (in order from most contaminated)

  1. Peaches
  2. Apples
  3. Bell Peppers
  4. Celery
  5. Nectarines
  6. Strawberries
  7. Cherries
  8. Lettuce
  9. Grapes (Imported)
  10. Pears
  11. Spinach
  12. Potatoes

"Cleanest 12"

produce with the lowest levels of residues (in order from least contaminated)

  1. Onions
  2. Avocados
  3. Sweet Corn (frozen)
  4. Pineapples
  5. Mangos
  6. Sweet Peas (frozen)
  7. Asparagus
  8. Kiwis
  9. Bananas
  10. Cabbage
  11. Broccoli
  12. Eggplant

The produce ranking, developed by analysts at Environmental Working Group, is based on the results of nearly 43,000 tests for pesticide residues on produce collected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration between 2000 and 2004. EWG is a not-for-profit environmental research organization dedicated to improving public health and protecting the environment. For more information or to download a wallet size produce shopper’s guide visit:

About the author

Joshua Rosenthal is the Founder and Director of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. He has worked in the nutrition field for more than 25 years, teaching at the school alongside health leaders including Andrew Weil, Deepak Chopra and Barry Sears. At Integrative Nutrition students are trained as Health Coaches, receiving the holistic nutrition education necessary for them go out into the world and help others improve their health and happiness.