For years we thought that we didn’t have to buy organic veggies and fruit since all we had to do before we ate any fruit and veggies was to wash each in soapy water and perhaps peel those we could.

        Now researchers have shown that in many cases pesticides, many linked to cancer, persist in the fruit and veggie even after washing and peeling.

        Government commissioned scientists in England demonstrated that simply washing fruit and vegetables does not remove all chemical pesticide residues from commercial sprayings. Environmental Work Group’s research earlier this year supported those findings.

        Peeling some fruit such as apples and vegetables such as potatoes helped some, but in many cases dangerous chemical pesticides persisted, sometimes even after cooking.

        Of course some fruit you can’t peel. Ever try to peel a grape?  A strawberry? A cherry tomato?

        Each of these still had significant amounts of chemical pesticides even after commercial and home washings.

        Like us, you might have been wary sometimes of buying imported fruit and veggies although we love clemintines in all seasons and sometimes buy fruit and veggies imported from Central and South America.

        But when tests were run on both domestic and imported veggies and fruit, researchers discovered fruits and vegetables after washing grown here retained 70% more pesticides than those that were imported.

        So what can you do?

        You can start by being cautious buying fruit and veggies with the most pesticide residue after washing. Here they are beginning with those with most pesticide residue: strawberries, spinach, nectarines, apples, peaches, celery, grapes, pears, cherries, tomatoes, bell peppers and potatoes.

         If this concerns you, consider buying organic if available.


Some of these findings are from Sharon Tisher’s brilliant, “A Pesticides Quiz and Primer: 2017 Update”, that appeared in the Maine Farmers and Growers Association Bulletin.

Material used with permission.