04 May 2010

To Buy Organic or Not to Buy Organic

...that is the question. I'm always tempted by the tons of cheap produce available a block away from me in Chinatown, but I feel like I should probably be buying only from green markets. Then again, I once paid $7 (seven dollars!) for one tomato at the Union Square farmers market. (It was a big tomato, but not that big.) If I bought everything from the farmers market, I'd go broke or hungry or both.

Apparently this is a common dilemma. Fortunately, the Environmental Working Group conducted a series of experiments to find out just how many pesticides wind up in our non-organic fruit and veggies by the time they're ready to eat (e.g., once you've washed and/or peeled them). Here's the full list of results of the 49 fruits and vegetables tested. And some aren't so bad. It is still possible to buy some of your produce from a conventional grocery store (or stall in Chinatown, even) and some from a green market and not be irresponsible. Just read the results of the testing and make your purchases accordingly.

Oh, and if you have a couple extra minutes, the methodology section is particularly interesting, too.


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