*Note: Originally posted on Facebook

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The USDA just released their latest report on pesticide residue found on produce. In most of my conversations with others, we get asked “Why use pesticides at all because they’re in fact, chemicals and harmful to us?” I can’t disagree with a part of that claim. We use pesticides on our farm as one of many tools to protect our crops. Without them, our crops would die from aggressive weeds, diseases and insects. But yes, at a high dose, these pesticides could be harmful so we follow rules and regulations to ensure we are safe as well as your food.

Here’s the kicker. We DON’T use them at high doses. In fact, for example, we only spray enough Round Up to fill a can of pop on an entire football field. And there is proof that we don’t too.

This report which is transparent and funded by taxpayer dollars, collects more than 10,000 samples of fruits, veggies and grains and uses extremely sensitive laboratory methods to test residue tolerance levels to ensure what you eat is safe.

For another year in a row, our food system gets an A+ grade. 41% of samples had ZERO levels and 99.6% met existing tolerance standards set out by the EPA. These standards are generally 100 times less than a dose that could cause any ill effect so there is quite a substantial safety net to protect you and me from pesticides.

That means I could eat 123,000 servings of celery, 7300 servings of potatoes or 3200 servings of spinach in ONE day without any effect from pesticides even if this produce had the highest amounts of residue recorded by the USDA. If I ate that much in one day though, pesticide residue might be my least concern šŸ˜‹

So what does this all mean? The fruits and veggies you eat are safe. Us farmers are proud to grow you safe, yummy food. Please be confident in our food system and in the farmers that grow them for you.

In the coming days, certain organizations (uhh humm, the Environmental Working Group) are going to distort these facts and use fear mongering to try and persuade you thatĀ other methods ofĀ farmingĀ are way safer (and better). They actually ignore the fact that similar pesticide residues are also found on organic food. Fear marketing at its best.

Now I’m going to enjoy this big bowl full of veggies made by farmers, with love.

For more info on the study: https://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/ā€¦/usda-annual-reporā€¦/

For more info on the pesticide residue calculator: http://safefruitsandveggies.com/pesticide-calculator

For more info on EWG “Dirty Dozen” by Nurse Loves Farmer: http://www.nurselovesfarmer.com/ā€¦/perspective-on-the-dirtyā€¦/