More Americans are seeking out organic food or produce free of pesticides and other chemicals. But can you escape the pesticide residues on foods, and is it always worth it to shell out the dollars for organics?
Some produce is worse than others, according to the Environmental Working Group, a non-profit that performs research and advocacy on toxic chemicals, among other things.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture maintains a pesticide residue database, and its findings indicate 178 different pesticides and pesticide breakdown products present on the thousands of produce samples it analyzed. The fruits and vegetables were washed and in some cases peeled before being tested.
EWG analyzed the USDA tests and found that nearly 70% of samples of 48 types of conventionally grown produce were contaminated with pesticide residues.
EWG's research has found that people who eat five fruits and vegetables a day from this list consume an average of 10 pesticides a day. Above, workers spray pesticide on a strawberry crop.
This is the EWG's list of popular fruits and vegetables with the most pesticide residue:
This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.