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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Save Money By Learning When To Buy Organic: The New "Dirty Dozen" Plus

Assorted bell pepper fruits from MexicoImage via Wikipedia
Eating fresh fruits and vegetables is an important part of having a healthy lifestyle; and while no one wants to eat produce that is full of pesticides, most of us are and don't even realize it.  There are many benefits of eating organic food: most importantly, they're pesticide-free, meaning no pesticides or chemical fertilizers were used to grow it. Unfortunately, organic food almost always costs more than conventionally-grown produce.

As I mentioned in my post, "Do You Know When To Buy Organic?", most of us cannot afford to buy all organic produce; it's just too expensive, especially in today's economy. That's why knowing what's most important to buy organic (those fruits and vegetables that are most contaminated with chemicals) and those fruits and vegetables that are probably okay to skip on the organic aisle- which will definitely save you money.

The Environmental Working Group has released a revised "Dirty Dozen" list for 2013.


12 Most Contaminated ("Dirty Dozen Plus" ™)
(Buy organic when possible)
  1. Apples
  2. Celery
  3. Cherry Tomatoes
  4. Cucumbers
  5. Grapes
  6. Hot Peppers
  7. Nectarines (imported)
  8. Peaches
  9. Potatoes
  10. Spinach
  11. Strawberries
  12. Sweet bell peppers
*Plus: 
- Collards & Kale
- Summer Squash & Zucchini
15 Least Contaminated ("Clean Fifteen" ™)
(Okay to buy non-organic)
  1. Asparagus
  2. Avocado
  3. Cabbage
  4. Cantaloupe
  5. Corn
  6. Eggplant
  7. Grapefruit
  8. Kiwi
  9. Mangoes
  10. Mushrooms
  11. Onions
  12. Papayas
  13. Pineapples
  14. Sweet Peas (frozen)
  15. Sweet Potatoes
To download a FREE, printable copy of the Environmental Working Group's Shopping Guide To Pesticides, click here. I challenge you to take it with you whenever you go grocery shopping.


Elena White is the founder and editor of  Life The Green Way, corporate sustainability coordinator at her day job, and a "rurban" wife and mother.  Learn more about her here and follow her on Twitter at @Lifethegreenway.

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