The California Department of Pesticide Regulation has released its 2012 pesticide residue report that shows the bulk of items tested had no detectable pesticide residues.
Of the 3,501 samples collected at farmers markets, wholesale and retail outlets, and distribution centers, 57.5% had no residues, according to the report. The samples included both domestically grown and imported produce.
An additional 38.9% of samples were within the legal tolerance levels, and 2.7% had illegal residues of pesticides not approved for use on that commodity.
Less than 1% of samples had pesticide residues that exceeded established tolerances.
All told, 98% of all California-grown produce sampled by the department had pesticide residues within the legal limits.
Most of the samples with illegal residues were from other countries and contained very low levels.
In 2012, scientists most frequently found illegal residues on yardlong beans, limes, tomatillos and chili peppers from Mexico; snow peas from Guatemala; ginger from China and the United States; and spinach from the United States, according to the report.
The report comes about a week after Dr. Oz aired a segment on his television show about pesticide residues titled, "“What the Food Industry Doesn’t Want You to Know."
The show was "clearly designed to scare viewers and raise produce safety concerns," according to a news release from the Watsonville, Calif.-based Alliance for Food and Farming."
Oz and numerous other health experts have gone on record to encourage the public to consume more conventionally or organically grown produce to improve their health.