EWG CLEAN15 & DIRTY DOZEN
The Dirty12 list comprises fruit and vegetables, popularly available in US supermarkets, which test out for the highest levels of pesticides, fungicides and chemical fertilisers, all harmful to human health.
Each year, the EWG revises its Shopping List to reflect fruit and vegetables which showed the highest levels of pesticides.
I’ve collated the lists of produce for each year since 2010 – see charts below. You will notice that some produce are consistently listed year after year, suggesting ethically good (Clean15), or bad (Dirty Dozen), farming practices of produce typically available in US supermarkets.
Clean15 marked #: sweet corn, papaya, summer squash and broccoli may be GM Produce.
The point to be made about the genetically modified (GM) foods listed above is this: GM foods are not grown as nature prescribed. GM foods may have no need for pesticide control as their genetic modification may naturally repel insects and fungi growth. Not an straightforward discussion, the debate on GM crops is huge. For my take on GM farming, [read here KIV].
While these lists exist, nothing is set in stone. It acknowledges the possibility that produce which are listed on the Dirty Dozen list may also be grown through ethical farming practices. Conversely, it also does not vouch for the ethical farming practices of produce listed on the Clean15.
My take away from these lists is the need to be vigilant of where the produce comes from and of information on farming practices. Produce such as apples, I go out of my way to buy organic – see My Apple Story.