Yes, There Are Pesticides on Organic Lettuce

The "organic" label doesn't always guarantee that something is pesticide-free.

Last week, the Environmental Working Group released its 2011 Shopper's Guide, which lists the produce with the highest pesticide residues, or its "Dirty Dozen." Of the fruits sampled, 98 percent of apples came back with pesticide residue, followed by celery, strawberries, and peaches.

The list isn't intended to scare you away from fruits and vegetables, but to help you decide when it might be best to go organic. While you'll find fewer pesticides on certified organic produce, organic doesn't always guarantee "pesticide-free." As Maureen Langlois explained recently on NPR’s Shots blog, the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that one-fifth of organic lettuces actually tested positive for spinosad, a naturally occurring soil bacterium that's manufactured by Dow Chemical and is one of about 40 synthetic chemicals permitted under the USDA's National Organic Standards.

All things considered, the responsible use of synthetic herbicides might be less of a risk than the irresponsible use of spinosad. As Jeff Gillman, a professor at the University of Minnesota and organic practice expert, told Langlois: "I'd rather buy food from someone who used Roundup once than someone who uses organic pesticides all the time."

So, it's worth taking the time to find farmers or produce managers you can really trust.


Seventy-five years ago, on January 27, 1945, the Soviet Army liberated the Auschwitz concentration camp operated by Nazi Germany in occupied Poland.

Auschwitz was the deadliest of Nazi Germany's 20 concentration camps. From 1940 to 1945 of the 1.3 million prisoners sent to Auschwitz, 1.1 million died. That figure includes 960,000 Jews, 74,000 non-Jewish Poles, 21,000 Roma, 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war, and up to 15,000 other Europeans.

The vast majority of the inmates were murdered in the gas chambers while others died of starvation, disease, exhaustion, and executions.

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via Barry Schapiro / Twitter

The phrase "stay in your lane" is usually lobbed at celebrities who talk about politics on Twitter by people who disagree with them. People in the sports world will often get a "stick to sports" when they try to have an opinion that lies outside of the field of play.

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via Stu Hansen / Twitter

In a move that feels like the subject line of a spam email or the premise of a bad '80s movie, online shopping mogul Yusaku Maezawa is giving away money as a social experiment.

Maezawa will give ¥1 million yen ($9,130) to 1,000 followers who retweeted his January 1st post announcing the giveaway. The deadline to retweet was Tuesday, January 7.

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