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Do you buy organic produce to avoid pesticides?

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There are many reasons why some consumers choose organic produce, from supporting smaller farms to reducing the environmental impact of fertilizers. Some people say organic food just tastes better.

Some organic apples that were tested by the CFIA in 2009 and 2010 contained the residue of more than one type of pesticide, according to documents obtained by CBC News.Some organic apples that were tested by the CFIA in 2009 and 2010 contained the residue of more than one type of pesticide, according to documents obtained by CBC News. (CBC)But if you buy organic to avoid chemical pesticides, records released by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency could surprise you.

The records show 23.6 per cent of the 178 organic apples tested in 2009 and 2010 contained pesticide residue.

Many of the 112 individual produce samples from 2010-2011 contained more than one type of pesticide residue, according to CFIA documents obtained by CBC News.

"Based on the limited data we have, we can also say that it appears that these pesticide residues are being found in 'organic' products less frequently and at somewhat lower levels than 'conventional' produce," CFIA officials told CBC News in an email.

Matthew Holmes, executive director of the Canada Organic Trade Association, said pesticide contamination is likely occurring after harvest, largely during packing and processing.

Do you buy organic produce to avoid pesticides? Or do you have other reasons for choosing organic food? Let us know in the comments below.



(This survey is not scientific. Results are based on readers' responses.)

Tags: food & drink

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