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Last week, we started telling you all about the “Dirty Dozen,” a list of fruits and veggies that you should always eat organic because they’re high in pesticide residue and other chemicals.  This week, we continue!  Onward and upward with the last half of the “Dirty Dozen!”

Grapes:  Grapes are frequent fliers on the “Dirty Dozen” list.  While you’ll find that imported grapes are especially high in pesticide residue, domestic grapes aren’t significantly better.  Where grapes go, raisins are sure to follow.  Consider going organic on your raisin selection as well; raisins have been tested and also have a high amount of pesticide residue stuck to them.  As much as we hate to point this out:  Take a minute or two to ponder your wine selection—but don’t freak out yet!  Organic wines are available.

Sweet Bell Peppers—If you’re looking to add some color to your plate with bell peppers, go organic.  Nearly 50 different chemicals have been identified on sweet bell peppers during testing.  Sadly, it seems that “tasting the rainbow” only makes things worse.  Tests show that colorful bell peppers (orange, yellow and red) are much worse than green.

Potatoes:  Say it ain’t so! (Sorry, it is!)  USDA testing has shown more than 35 pesticides found on potatoes.  So much for that baked potato soup, French fries, and scalloped potatoes?  Not if you buy organic.  Your other alternative?  Try sweet potatoes; they’re much safer than their white brethren.

Blueberries:  It’s the berries, again.  While we all know we need to eat more of them because they’re jam-packed with vitamins and antioxidants, you really need to eat berries grown organically.  More than 50 different pesticide residues have been found on blueberries, and while we’d like to tell you to try cherries or cranberries instead, we can’t safely say it.  These berries may not have made the “Dirty Dozen” list, but they’re generally high in chemical residue and should only be eaten organic.  Still want some fruit on your cereal?  Try bananas!

Lettuce:  Leafy greens can be tricky, and so we add lettuce to the list with spinach.  When tested, more than 50 different chemicals were found on lettuce, making it a surefire member of the “Dirty Dozen.”  Farmers markets are likely places to find your favorite salad staple organically grown, but if you’re really having trouble finding organic lettuce, look for a green alternative like asparagus.

Kale:  Kale is one of our favorite super foods, and generally known as a pretty hardy plant, so we were a little surprised to see it on the “Dirty Dozen” list.  For whatever reason, when tested, it had quite a lot of pesticide residue (which it holds onto firmly) and ended up here.  If you’re looking for a dark green alternative, try broccoli, asparagus or dandelion greens.

So, there you have it!  If you’re like us, you’re probably trying to stick to organic, pesticide-free produce as much as we are, but it’s not always easy.  We hope this list helps you identify those fruits and veggies that you should stay away from and has offered you some alternatives when organic varieties of your favorites aren’t available.  Next time, we’re serving up the “Clean Fifteen;” fifteen of the safest fruits and veggies to eat that are not grown organically.