Food Safety

The Shoppers Guide to Pesticides in Produce


The Shoppers Guide to Pesticides in Produce is a publication that should be of interest to anyone in the food industry.  Note that it is produced by the EWG – Environmental Working Group which is a non-profit environmental health organization.  It contains testing data on 46,569 samples of non-organic fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables conducted by the USDA.  Each year a rotating list of produce is tested by workers at the USDA who clean, peel, and prepare the vegetables before the testing for 251 different pesticides.

Blueberries Joined Green Beans on the Dirty Dozen List

What are the Top Twelve on the Pesticide List to watch out for in 2023?  Strawberries and spinach are the top two on the list (same as 2022), followed by kale, collard, and mustard greens.  Next come peaches, pears, nectarines and apples, grapes, bell and hot peppers and cherries.  Blueberries and green beans were 11th and 12th on the list. There was a total of 201 pesticides on these twelve foods with kale, collard and mustard greens containing the largest number of (103) different pesticides.

One alarming fact noted in the report was that “Some of the USDA’s tests show traces of pesticide long since banned by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency).  The report stated “nearly 90% of blueberry and green bean samples had concerning findings. In 2016, the last time green beans were inspected, samples contained 51 different pesticides, according to the report. The latest round of testing found 84 different pest killers, and 6% of samples tested positive for ace hate, an insecticide banned from use in the vegetable in 2011 by the EPA.

Acephate, phosmet and malathion are organophosphates, which interfere with the normal function of the nervous system, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  A high dose of these chemicals can cause difficulty breathing, nausea, a lower heart rate, vomiting, weakness, paralysis, and seizures, the CDC said. If exposed over an extended time to smaller amounts, people may “feel tired or weak, irritable, depressed, or forgetful.”

Clean 15 – The Least Contaminated Foods on the List in 2023

Avocados top the least contaminated list!

This is a list of the items that tested the lowest in pesticide residue – nearly 65% of the foods on this list had no detectable levels of pesticide. At the top is avocado followed by sweet corn, pineapple, onions, papaya, frozen green peas, asparagus, honeydew melon, kiwi, cabbage mushrooms, mangos, sweet potatoes.

Naturally most consumers won’t just stop eating some of the above-mentioned offenders on the list despite high levels of pesticide residue. One alternative is to consider switching to organically grown products that usually have no pesticide residue. 

We have presented here a reference guide that is published annually by EWG that may be of interest to you.  Noon International in no way is affiliated or supports EWG but has presented this information to those who may be interested in the findings.

Lily Noon


  1. Blueberries Have Joined Green Beans in This Year’s Dirty Dozen List by Sandee La Motte, CNN, 3/15/23, CNN,
  2. Environmental Working Group,

Shoppers Guide to Pesticides in Produce』は、食品業界関係者であれば誰もが関心を寄せるべき発行物です。環境と健康をテーマに活動する非営利団体のEnvironmental Working Group(EWG)が発行していて、非オーガニックの生鮮および冷凍の野菜と果物を対象に米国農務省(USDA)が実施した4万6,569件のサンプル試験のデータを含んでいます。USDAは毎年ローテーションで異なる野菜と果物を試験しており、洗浄して皮を剥き、準備したうえで、251種類の残留農薬の状況を調べています。



EWGの「Dirty Dozen」リスト、すなわち汚い12品目のトップ2はイチゴとホウレンソウでした(2022年から変わらず)。以下、3位ケール/カラードグリーン/カラシナ、4位モモ、5位洋ナシ、6位ネクタリン、7位リンゴ、8位ブドウ、9位ピーマン/パプリカ/トウガラシ、10位チェリー。そして、ブルーベリーとサヤインゲンがそれぞれ11位と12位になりました。これら12品目に含まれていた農薬は合計201種で、品目ごとの最多はケール/カラードグリーン/カラシナの103種でした。




「Clean 15」は残留農薬が最も少ないきれいな15品目です。このリストに含まれた品目の65%近くは、農薬が検出可能なレベルでは見つかりませんでした。1位はアボカドで、以下、スイートコーン、パイナップル、タマネギ、パパイヤ、グリーンピース(冷凍)、アスパラガス、ハニーデューメロン、キウイフルーツ、キャベツ、マッシュルーム、マンゴー、サツマイモ、スイカ、ニンジンが続きました。


ご興味があれば、EWGが毎年発行しているレファレンスガイドをご覧ください。Noon InternationalはEWGと関係はなく、支持を表明しているわけでもありませんが、この情報に関心がある方のために、ここに紹介させていただきました。

Lily Noon



  1. Blueberries Have Joined Green Beans in This Year’s Dirty Dozen List(ブルーベリーとサヤインゲンが今年の「汚い12品目」に加わる)、著:Sandee La Motte、2023年3月15日、CNN、
  2. Environmental Working Group、


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