October 22nd, 2010 - Barbara Feiner
Five deaths and six illnesses are being linked to celery distributed by San Antonio-based SanGar Produce & Processing.
The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has ordered the company to stop processing food and recall all products shipped from the plant since January. The order was issued after laboratory tests of chopped celery from the plant indicated the presence of Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium that can cause severe illness.
The recalled products—primarily cut fresh produce in sealed packages—were distributed to restaurants and institutional entities like hospitals and schools. The DSHS doesn’t believe products were sold in grocery stores.
Read More:5 Die, 6 Sickened After Eating Tainted Celery
June 2nd, 2010 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
That sounds like the bizzaro world version of “contains 100 daily servings of vitamins and minerals.”
But it’s true. The Environmental Working Group claims non-organic celery – i.e. the stuff billions of people buy willy-nilly everyday – has 67 different kinds of pesticides.
Celery was fingered as containing the most pesticides because of its structure; soft skin makes it very prone to absorption of things it touches.
Have you ever stuck a stalk of celery in a glass of food coloring? Same idea.
The scary part is the testing of vegetables, like celery, takes place after the United States Food & Drug Administration uses high-power pressure water systems to wash the produce. Fail.
The Environmental Working Group released this information to help educate consumers about what they’re eating. Good idea, I doubt most people putting peanut butter and ants – err, raisins – on a stalk of celery know about its pesticide content.
Other filthy dirty fruits and vegetables include cherries, nectarines, collard greens, and potatoes. On the other hand, corn, onions, avocados, and mangoes are among the cleanest produce. Hooray!
Image credit: webshots
Read More:Non-Organic Celery Packed with 67 Pesticides
November 16th, 2006 - Barbara Feiner
Tuesday’s recipe for Moist & Savory Stuffing calls for celery—a crop that’s heavily sprayed with pesticides. Buying organic celery protects you against exposure to organophosphates like malathion.
Celery is a member of the umbellifer family, which includes carrots, parsley and fennel, according to Dianne Onstad, author of Whole Foods Companion. These vegetables “get their characteristic flavor from the volatile oils found in the stems, leaves and seeds,” she writes.
Most of us buy traditional green-ribbed celery, which has large green leaves, but you may find golden celery at your local natural and organic food store. The latter, according to Onstad, is often grown in the dark, which changes the conventional color to white or golden. Chinese celery is also available at some markets.
When purchasing celery, look for crisp stalks with a uniform length, Onstad advises. If you are making soup or stuffing, you can chop the leaves and add them to the mix. Don’t go overboard, however, as too much of a good thing can overpower other flavors and impart an unwanted bitterness.
Read More:Organic Celery