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Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Organic Dilemma

Whenever I go grocery shopping, I always go to two stores. I get as many basics as I can at the local discount supermarket, then for the harder-to-find vegan necessities I head to the natural foods store. I'm always torn between paying less at the first store for conventional produce and ponying up the extra cash for organic produce at the natural foods store.

I know this list has been around for a while but I just found it and thought I'd share. It lists the twelve most heavily pesticided (I know that's not a word) types of produce; the idea is to help you prioritize which foods are worth paying extra for the organic version. (More power to you if you buy all organics; I'm too cheap/poor.)

THE DIRTY DOZEN
12 most pesticide-laden produce items

peaches
apples
bell peppers
celery
cherries
imported grapes
nectarines
pears
potatoes
red raspberries
spinach
strawberries

Now, because I am a total nerd, I made up some business card sized printouts of this list so I could keep one in my wallet. My plan is to buy the organic versions of these things and stick with conventional for the rest of my produce. If you are also a nerd, feel free to download my file (which is, of course, designed to print nicely on those blank business cards you can buy, or, if you are slightly less nerdish, just use regular paper).

So, tell me - do you buy organic?

7 comments:

girl least likely to said...

i am totally going to print up your list--i love it! i do buy organic, sometimes, but totally haphazardly. like you, we split our grocery shopping between the mainstream store that is closest to our house, two co-ops, and whole foods. if we're at a co-op or WF when we're looking for produce, we buy organic. if not, we don't. i'd like to be a little more mindful of that.

Anonymous said...

I buy 95% organic... There are a few things that are not organically/locally available(they are not grown in the US).

Here is my Organic Dilemma:

Sometimes I wonder even when you buy organic(u are kind to Mother Earth)but may still add to global warming by buying products that are not organic and locally grown. The question is buy local with chemicals or Organic from other countries...Tough Choice!!! I unfortunately do not live in California...Please chime in...

gladcow said...

I used to shop exactly like that. I still do, one quarter of the year. The other three quarters of the year we have two shares in a local organic CSA. this is our second winter with the CSA and we love it. it's really increased the amount and variety of veggies we eat. it's just the perfect amount, and we always have fruit and veggies. love love love

jerilouise said...

I love my dirty dozen list and will be using it from now on. Thank you for sharing it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this list, I'm definitely taking it with me when I go grocery shopping! I knew about apples but not the other ones.

Vegan_Noodle said...

Great reminder about that list...I printed it up awhile ago, but can't seem to find it! I try to buy organic, especially if it's one of those with lots of pesticides. I also struggle with local vs. organic, since I get a lot of produce at our farmer's market that isn't organic. But I always try... unless the blueberries are $10 a pound like they are right now at WF.

lauren bacchus said...

this is a fabulous list! thank you so much for sharing. I really appreciate it. :)