When to buy organic? Know your Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen

Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen: When to buy organic

For those of you who try to eat organic as much as possible, would you be surprised if I said you don’t always have to?

Every year the Environmental Working Group tests a wide variety of conventionally grown (non-organic) produce for levels of pesticides.  They publish their findings in a Shopper’s Guide as well as boiling them down to two easy-to-understand lists: the Dirty Dozen (highest levels of pesticides) and Clean Fifteen (lowest levels.)  The Clean Fifteen can help us all to save a few dollars by buying conventional when we can and the Dirty Dozen is a helpful reminder of which foods are the most important to buy organic.  Most recently that original dozen has expanded a bit to 15, but Dirty Fifteen just isn’t as catchy.

I can’t seem to keep track of all of these, so don’t feel bad if you can’t either!  I mean, potatoes should be organic but sweet potatoes don’t have to be?  It’s hard to keep it all straight.  Save yourself a headache and just bookmark this page or pin the image to return to later while shopping.


2 Responses to “When to buy organic? Know your Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen”
  1. S.H. says:

    On the clean 15 list you have sweet corn. Your list seems to be focused on pesticides but does not mention buying organic to avoid genetically modified items (GMOs). Just a thot.

    • Great point, S.H.! This post is only focused on pesticides and not GMOs, I didn’t want to over complicate things in one post. Also, it’s not my list, I’m just relaying info on this post, but it’s important to keep in mind.

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