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The Clean 15 & Dirty Dozen List of Foods

People are always looking at how to buy the best food they can.

We know from past organic food awareness campaign, Grocery Store Wars, it is best to try buy organically grown foods, like organic fruits and organic vegetables.

However, you want to try buy organic without spending a fortune.

Well there is a way to help make sure you can get the best groceries and know which ones you need to avoid.

This is using current data available to the public on the amount of pesticide residue on foods in the US.

The below list of foods is kept up to date each year by the nonprofit, Environmental Working Group (EWG). This is the current list of foods for 2020.

The Clean 15 Food List for 2020

  1. Avocado
  2. Sweet Corn
  3. Pineapple
  4. Onion
  5. Papaya
  6. Sweet Peas Frozen
  7. Eggplant
  8. Asparagus
  9. Cauliflower
  10. Cantaloupes
  11. Broccoli
  12. Mushrooms
  13. Cabbage
  14. Honeydew Melon
  15. Kiwi


The Environmental Working Group also suggests another reason to look to buy the Clean 15 foods when they are organically grown is because:

Small amount of sweet corn, papaya and summer squash sold in the United States is produced from genetically modified seeds. Buy organic varieties of these crops if you want to avoid genetically modified produce.

Environmental Working Group

The Dirty Dozen Food List for 2020

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Kale
  4. Nectarines
  5. Apples
  6. Grapes
  7. Peaches
  8. Cherries
  9. Pears
  10. Tomatoes
  11. Celery
  12. Potatoes


* The EWG also have a supplementary warning on hot peppers, which they sneak onto the list.

The Dirty Dozen vs The Clean 15

The Dirty Dozen™ is a trademark term used to define the twelve crops that farmers typically use the most pesticides on, versus, the Clean 15™ which is also a trademark term to describe the fifteen fruit and vegetable that have the lowest amount of pesticide residue.

The 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Environmental Working Group owns the trademarks to both these terms and produces these two food lists annually as part of the EWG’s Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™ awareness campaign.

Where Does the Data Come From

The data for these food lists comes from the United States Department of Agriculture Pesticide Data Program.

The pesticide data program reports what it has discovered when monitoring pesticide residue levels on agricultural commodities commonly consumed by infants and children.

Buy Online and Give Back

When you’re looking at your grocery list budget, try prioritize your food buying decisions using this data.

If you are able to afford to buy organic produce it appears that is a good choice. Many grocery stores are now offering convenient, curbside pick-up and grocery delivery services.

At Giving Assistant you can help support the Environmental Working Group by donating to them just by shopping for your organic groceries online through Giving Assistant.

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Find out how Giving Assistant works to get started.