Are Pesticides Used On Oranges Estrogenic?


Oct 27, 2013
Organic oranges cost over 3 times as much as conventional oranges in my area, and I was wondering if anybody has any info regarding the types of pesticides used in growing conventional oranges, and if they have any estrogenic inducing properties?

As well, how well do orange peels prevent pesticide from reaching the inside fruit? According to ewg's pesticide produce list, oranges rank 31 out of 50, but I'm not sure if this really means anything.

What's better, drinking more conventional fresh squeezed orange juice, or less of the organic kind?


Nov 23, 2013
This is just my opinion. Due to the thick skin on the orange I believe we are mostly protected from any herbicides or pesticides. I buy organic when I can but don't sweat it if I can't. On the other hand I would never eat conventional grapes because the skin is so thin and you pretty much have to eat the skin to eat a grape. There is a list called the dirty dozen that list the top 12 fruits and vegetables that are not a good choice unless they are organic. I don't remember them all but things like oranges and bananas were ok because the thick skin protects the edible part. That seems reasonable to me.


Jul 24, 2013
Here is a paper reporting that one (imazalil) of two pesticides (thiabendazole and imazalil) was found in small amounts in the pulp of the orange while both were found in the peel: ... 07-3-3.pdf

They are "post harvest" pesticides. So some pesticide can diffuse into the pulp. These two are the most frequently found pesticides in oranges (11 Known or Probable Carcinogens, 7 Suspected Hormone Disruptors, 7 Neurotoxins, 7 Developmental or Reproductive Toxins) according to this testing:


Jan 25, 2014
Various fungicides (thiabendazole, imazalil and others) are applied to oranges and their packaging post harvest to protect them during transport and storage. That is what the odd smell is in the citrus section of markets. Some are volatile, they become a vapor, and diffuse into the fruit, all are present in the wax that is applied to the orange skin and get into the oil of the orange skin and will get on and into your skin when you handle the oranges.

Orange -juice- from -domestic- oranges is less likely to contain these fungicides because the oranges are usually processed immediately after harvest to avoid storage expenses and spoilage and the expense of applying the post harvest fungicides/pesticides.

I never use the rind ("zest") of non-organically grown oranges myself and would not use packaged orange rind unless it were marked organic.


Jul 24, 2013
himsahimsa said:
....I never use the rind ("zest") of non-organically grown oranges myself and would not use packaged orange rind unless it were marked organic.

There needs to be a name for contaminated "zest"-maybe "zust" for rusty zest :^}

On a bit of a tangent: ... nk/283579/

"Most commercial orange juice is so heavily processed that it would be undrinkable if not for the addition of something called flavor packs. This is the latest technological innovation in the industry’s perpetual quest to mimic the simplicity of fresh juice. Oils and essences are extracted from the oranges and then sold to a flavor manufacturer who concocts a carefully composed flavor pack customized to the company’s flavor specifications. The juice, which has been patiently sitting in storage sometimes for more than a year, is then pumped with these packs to restore its aroma and taste, which by this point have been thoroughly annihilated. You’re welcome."


Jan 25, 2014
Calling orange rind "zest" is a marketing ploy that only started showing up around 1980 when (us) health food types began pointing out that the rind of oranges is so contaminated. I think most people understandably have no idea what "zest" is. It sounds so good, right? So invigorating.

Consider that industry feed mills get away with labeling a bucket of white slush "Fat Free" sour cream. That's impossible. If it's fat free it can't be cream, sour or not. But most of those things that used to be people or citizens, have now been repurposed and unprotestingly relabeled as "Consumers" and will suck down anything presented as food weather is is or not without a second thought.


Mar 10, 2016
Last time I ate oranges I felt TERRIBLE. Um, I had to bite into the peels at first to peel them, so it could be that (they weren't organic), but it also could be my histamine and salicylate problems which hopefully will go away with PUFA depletion. So I don't eat them but you should probably buy organic.
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