According to a study conducted by 60 million consumers, certain families of fruits or vegetables are significantly more contaminated by pesticides than others. Eight categories of fruits and vegetables, including green beans, peas, raspberries, and apricots, were carefully examined by 60 million consumers. Whether they come from organic or non-organic farming, frozen, canned, or fresh, it is safe to say that they are not all equal when it comes to pesticides. A total of 134 articles were subjected to a thorough analysis, targeting 600 harmful molecules. Four types of residues detected in one or more families of products are actually prohibited in France and the European Union.

Good news, 57%, or a majority of the samples, are devoid of any pesticide residues. Among the families of fruits and vegetables analyzed, pineapples, tomatoes, and button mushrooms stand out for their almost total absence of residues. According to 60 million consumers, this finding can be partly attributed to the cultivation method of tomatoes, which are largely grown in greenhouses and therefore less vulnerable to pesticides. In addition, the tough skin of pineapples acts as an effective barrier against these substances. However, at the bottom of the list, we find raspberries, displaying an average of 2.8 residues. This less flattering ranking is attributed by the magazine to the delicacy of this fruit, which requires more phytosanitary treatments.

The results also indicate that frozen versions are more “polluted” than fresh and canned products. The hypothesis put forward by the magazine to explain this difference is that fruits and vegetables are immediately frozen after harvesting, which slows down the degradation of chemical molecules. On the other hand, fresh products are often stored for several days in open air and light, which could explain their lower pesticide levels. Among frozen products, raspberries are the most contaminated family in the test.

Organic options of fruits and vegetables are significantly less contaminated than their conventional counterparts. For example, organic green beans have an average of 0.1 pesticide residue, while conventional ones have 2.5. Among frozen fruits and vegetables, the latter are the most affected. However, when it comes to tomatoes and mushrooms, both organic and non-organic options are less contaminated. Therefore, it is advisable not to opt for non-organic frozen green beans or raspberries.