5 foods that you should avoid buying conventionally due to pesticides
Pesticides. Such a scary word, and yet, very present in our day to day life.
In conventional agriculture, a lot of fruits, vegetables, grains and other foods are grown with pesticides. Pesticides are a mix of substances –usually chemicals– that are used to control the growth of the plant and help them grow without any kind of pest (weeds, insects, germs, small animals such as rodents, and even other crops).
You might be wondering: Are pesticides harmful for our health? And for the environment?
Well, Pesticide levels in conventional produce are almost always below their safety limits. But even if these measures are taken, pesticide effects could be harmful when built up for both humans and the environment.
But no worries, I have some good news to tell you. There are possible ways to eat delicious foods without pesticides. In this blog, I will tell you more about this. But first, let’s get deeper into pesticides.
Recently, the 2020 European Union report on pesticide residues in food was released. This document takes a number of samples for 12 food products to be analyzed by EU Member States. These food products were: carrots, cauliflowers, kiwi fruit, oranges, onions, pears, potatoes, dried beans, rice, rye, bovine liver and poultry fat.
Can you guess which ones had the highest number of pesticides? Well, let’s take a look:
It’s sad to read that this crunchy orange vegetable that is so versatile contains more than 7 different pesticides.
Tied with carrots, 7 different pesticides were found in these essential multilayered bulb: onions.
Probably the most popular fruit among all citrus. 13 different pesticides were found in this product.
Soft and juicy, 14 different pesticides were found in fruit. How sad.
Last but definitely not least, one of the most consumed grains in the world. There were found 15 different pesticides were found in rice. Oops, right? Well, at least you can eat pearl barley from Ekoto as an alternative! As a side-effect, it is also grown more local, within Europe, and has much more of a noticeable flavour.
It’s quite disappointing reading this information, but I assure you we can take action to avoid buying and consuming food with high levels of pesticides.
Buy organic. Buy local. Buy seasonal foods.
Let me explain you. If you buy certified organic products, then it means it’s verified that the food was grown without any pesticides, GMO’s or chemicals. This is the most trustworthy way of making sure that your food hasn’t got any pesticides, but I understand that for many reasons, it’s not always an option. That’s why buying local and seasonal are good alternatives too. If you know your local farmer, then it’s easier to know which processes they use. Also, buying seasonal foods might show that the life cycle of the food is respected (so that ideally, less chemicals or pesticides are needed to grow that food). Have you ever wondered why you can find strawberries in the supermarket during December? Hmm doubtful.
Oh, and don't forget that at Ekoto you can find a variety of foods that are grown organically (yes, we’re in the process of obtaining the certification).
I hope this was interesting to read, and mostly, useful for your next buying decisions. Your choices matter!