If you read my post this past Friday, you had a chance to get a glimpse into my thoughts regarding supporting your local produce industry. Today's topic is somewhat similar in nature, in that it involves the decisions we make about which organic foods give you the biggest bang for you buck.
In an ideal world we would all have limitless budgets to purchase fresh, organic produce.
*Let me interject here and just say that in an ideal world I would also have a nicely styled and adorable hen house in my backyard with a hen (named Miss Prissy from Fog Horn Leg Horn) that would lay me fresh eggs every morning. I'm still working on Trey with this one....
Okay, back to my point. Ideally this would be possible. But let's get real: organic food is expensive. And a lot of times I find that it goes bad even faster than non-organic food because it doesn't have things like the wax that coats most apples. Yum!
Because of this, each year the Environmental Working Group publishes a list of the foods containing the highest levels of pesticide residues, and also those foods containing the lowest levels. This way you can make an informed decision about which foods you want to purchase in either category (organic or non-organic).
Disclaimer: I did not come up with the phrases "Dirty Dozen" and "Clean Fifteen". These embarrassingly witty terms were coined by the EWG.
The Dirty Dozen
*Listed in Order of "Dirtiest" to "Least Dirty, but Still Dirty"
Sweet Bell Peppers
Kale/Collard Greens (it was a tie)
The Clean Fifteen
One thing I'd also like to add to this is the fact that you can consider whether you are going to eat the skin of a particular fruit or vegetable. i.e. If you are baking a potato and won't eat the skin, it isn't quite as important to buy organic.