More on the Dirty Dozen

The Environmental Working Group’s list of the top commodities with pesticide residues, their so called “Dirty Dozen” is a very misleading study and does not seem to be replicated by other research do the same kind of investigations. California’s Department of Pesticide Regulation’s program has done the same kind of study for many years and has found the majority of produce sampled had no residue and of the small number that had residue the amount was well under tolerable levels (see recent data). Of course there are those that would argue that any amount of a chemical residue is too much but living in a society that benefits from chemical technology it seems that we have to tolerate some sort of safe levels. Where to we turn for information on these things? Do we go with the reports from “special interest” groups that have an agenda? Do we not trust government to give us the data we need? I have blogged on our perception of risk before and it bares repeating here that we evaluate risk based on emotions and not facts. The major health risks that have been identified are tobacco, over use of alcohol, obesity, and not pesticide residue. The continued use of scare tactics by groups that want pesticide use to stop entirely is counter productive to the need to get people to eat more produce and less processed foods. “Health experts and scientists say produce, grown either conventionally or organically, is safe to eat for you and your children. Not only are conventionally and organically grown fruits and vegetables safe and nutritious, Americans should be consuming more of these, not less, if they hope to reduce their risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and obesity.” This comes from a site with, I feel, good real data on this topic, SafeFruitsandVeggies.com. There is much more information and data that says the produce we eat is safe than there is saying it is not. Consider the source of your information, look at a variety of sites, not just one or two that have an agenda, and be mindful of the real health issues out there. We all need to eat healthy and the produce grown in this country is the safest there is.

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