Which Produce to Buy Organic

Recently we were doing some research on what produce we should buy organic versus that which we might be able to save a little money on and buy conventional.

We know a lot of you would say to buy everything organic, but others of you will be able to relate to my dilemma.  We have families plus pets, chickens, etc..  We can’t always do all our shopping at the local health food store or farmer’s market.  Often we need to shop at Target or a “regular” grocery store.  We also can’t really afford to buy everything organic.  We do grow a lot of our own veggies, but we don’t grow them all.  Making multiple stops at various stores is often not feasible (or sanity inducing).  So… that lead us to start researching which we can save on and which we should splurge on.   Read on to learn more about our list of the produce to buy organic.

Which Produce to Buy Organic

Our research took me to the Environmental Working Group – http://www.ewg.org/  and their lists of the  “dirty dozen – http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/dirty_dozen_list.php” and “clean fifteen – http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/clean_fifteen_list.php”.  These lists were made with regard to pesticide levels on the produce that you end up consuming (i.e. Cantaloupe might have pesticides on the rind, but you don’t eat that.  The fruit inside is relatively safe.).  So, they do not take into account GMOs.  The GMO issue is one that is important to us and one that worries us as well.

We do not believe that, on the whole, GMOs are safe in the long-term for humans.  So, when the EWG put sweet corn and papayas in their “clean fifteen” list, we weren’t buying it (literally!).  Almost all sweet corn and papayas that are conventionally grown are genetically modified.  For that reason, we put them both on my “splurge” side and will be buying organic.  Other than that, we felt pretty comfortable with what the EWG presented and if you look at both lists, you’ll see they are very similar.

You might want to print out the graphic above and hang it on your fridge so that you can remember which produce to buy organic and which you can save a little on and go with conventional.  We are sharing it here because we thought you might want to do the same.