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Mom always said. "Eat your fruits and vegetables"! That's because the health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risks of pesticide exposure. Use EWG's Shopper's Guide to Pesticides™ to reduce your exposures as much as possible, but eating conventionally-grown produce is far better than not eating fruits and vegetables at all. The Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce™ will help you determine which fruits and vegetables have the most pesticide residues and are the most important to buy organic. You can lower your pesticide intake substantially by avoiding the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables and eating the least contaminated produce.

This year, EWG has expanded the Dirty Dozen™ with a Plus category to highlight two crops -- green beans and leafy greens, meaning, kale and collard greens - that did not meet traditional Dirty Dozen ™criteria but were commonly contaminated with highly toxic organophosphate insecticides. These insecticides are toxic to the nervous system and have been largely removed from agriculture over the past decade. But they are not banned and still show up on some food crops.

Further more, Commodity crop corn used for animal feed and biofuels is almost all produced with genetically modified (GMO) seeds, as is some sweet corn sold for human consumption. Since GMO sweet corn is not labeled as such in US stores, EWG advises those who have concerns about GMOs to buy organic sweet corn.

Download your copy of  EWG's 2012 Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce as a PDF

Here are some simple ways to enjoy more of your favorite organic products for less.

Buy in bulk.
Many products are sold at a discounted rate when they are purchased in bulk. Buy more organic and save!

Shop in season.
Many products are less expensive when they are purchased in season.

Cash in on coupons and Sales.
Coupons are a great way to save on many of your favorite organic products. Manufacturers and stores alike are getting on board with coupons and sales for organic products. They know that their customers want to buy organic, and the organic market is now competitive enough that coupons and sales will encourage shoppers to buy certain products. Many manufacturers make printable coupons available on their websites.

Find Store Brand Organic Food
Chain grocery stores, such as Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods offer generic or store brand organic products that may be less expensive than name brand organic products. Visit these stores and do price comparisons on your favorite items, so you’ll know where the best place is to shop. These stores also have sales and specials on their store brand products, so if you time things just right, you may get a double offer of savings.

Explore farm stands and farmers markets.
Farm stands and farmers markets are cropping up all over the country, offering competitive prices on a wide range of organic products.

Become a member of a CSA.
CSA or Community Sponsored Agriculture groups can be a wonderful way to save money on organic produce.
For over 25 years, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) has become a popular way for consumers to buy local, seasonal food directly from a farmer. Here are the basics: a farmer offers a certain number of "shares" to the public. Typically the share consists of a box of vegetables, but other farm products may be included. Interested consumers purchase a share (aka a "membership" or a "subscription") and in return receive a bounty of fresh vegetables and fruit for a small cost per week throughout the farming season. Many of these farms promise to use organic practices, and some of them are actually certified organic. This arrangement creates several rewards for both the farmer and the consumer. Shares of a CSA usually amount to between $25 and $35 a week for food worth about twice that cost.
Visit LocalHarvest for a farm near you.

Choose organic versions of the products you use most.
To get the most benefit for your organic buck, try buying organic versions of the products you use most. Whether that is milk, produce, or personal care products, buying organic will not only help reduce your exposure to harmful synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, but also support a system of agricultural management that is great for the planet.

When switching to organics, you will find that many digestive issues straighten themselves out and your taking in fewer chemicals meaning the appearance of your skin, hair and nails may improve as well. As a general rule of thumb, if you can't pronounce something you find on an ingredient list, chances are, its chemical. Take your time when transitioning to organic and you'll soon reap the benefits.


Check out the new Ibotta offer for Plum Organics. Save $1 off any Plum Organics Mash-Ups (4ct box). 

Target has these for $4.96 regular price and often puts them on sale for $3.99. Use this Ibotta offer to save $1 and get them for $3.96 or $.99 each or less.

Also use this $0.50 off Plum Organics baby or tots pouch when you "like" them on Facebook ($0.50/1) for even a greater deal!

Ibotta is available for Iphone & Android. but I use Ibotta on my iPod, It is a free app that pays you when you purchase chosen products. Select your offers, shop, and then take a picture of your purchased product through the app. You will then be able to withdraw your money earned via a paypal account once you reach $5.