Should You Buy Organic Apples?

Plus, 4 ways to reduce your exposure to pesticide residues.

September/October 2009

By Nicci Micco

Should You Buy Organic Apples? Organic vs. Nonorganic Vegetables

As a nutrition editor, I know the value of eating loads of fruits and vegetables. I prefer to buy local when I can, but I’ve never been a purist about eating only organic. Now that I’m a mom, there are some foods I feel more comfortable about buying organic. Apples are one of these foods. Twenty-five years ago, mothers had to worry about Alar, a spray used to redden apples and make them ripen at the same time. Luckily, I don’t have to: Alar’s manufacturer pulled it from the market in 1989 after reports linked the chemical to cancer. This “Alar scare” (which many now say was overblown) ultimately may have made apples—and produce in general—safer by forcing the Environmental Protection Agency to re-evaluate pesticide regulations.

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