2012 Updates to the EWG’s “Dirty Dozen” List

by Natalie on July 7, 2012

Do you know about the “Dirty Dozen”? If you don’t, now is a good time to find out.

The “Dirty Dozen” is a list of fruits and vegetables highest in pesticide residues. If you’re unable to purchase 100% organic, this little list helps you prioritize which fruits and vegetables you should buy organic.

The brains behind this shopping guide is the Environmental Working Group (EWG). They use laboratory tests done by the USDA pesticide testing program to create the list. The EWG is a non-for-profit organization dedicated to protecting public health and the environment.

By choosing organic versions of the foods listed on the Dirty Dozen list, the EWG states that we can significantly lower our exposure to pesticide residues.

The EWG just updated their list for 2012. Here’s whats on it:

2012 “Dirty Dozen” List (buy these organic)

  1. Apples
  2. Celery
  3. Sweet Bell Peppers
  4. Peaches
  5. Strawberries
  6. Nectarines (imported)
  7. Grapes
  8. Spinach
  9. Lettuce
  10. Cucumbers
  11. Blueberries (domestic)
  12. Potatoes
  13. +Green beans
  14. +Kale/Greens

+ newly added this year. May contain pesticides of special concern.

2012 “Clean 15” List (lowest in pesticides)

  1. Onions
  2. Sweet Corn
  3. Pineapples
  4. Avocado
  5. Cabbage
  6. Sweet peas
  7. Asparagus
  8. Mangoes
  9. Eggplant
  10. Kiwi
  11. Cantaloupe (domestic)
  12. Sweet Potatoes
  13. Grapefruit
  14. Watermelon
  15. Mushrooms

I use the Dirty Dozen list all the time. Even if I did all my shopping at Whole Foods, it is nearly impossible to buy everything organic. I find this list is a great tool to help me determine which organic produce to focus on.

*Do you feel confused about the statement “organic”? To learn more, check out this post all about organics.

Question for you: Have you heard of the Dirty Dozen list before, and do you like to use it? Leave your response in the comments box below! Can’t wait to hear!

Wishing you health and happiness,





to learn more about the EWG visit www.ewg.org

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: