If you buy produce in the stores, most come with numbers printed on a sticker.
The sticker is called the PLU code, or price lookup number. The PLU is scanned at the checkout and gives the price but it also tells you how the fruit was grown.
When you understand what the PLU code means, you can tell if the fruit was genetically modified, organically grown or produced with chemical fertilizers, fungicides, or herbicides.
By the way, the adhesive used to attach the stickers is considered food-grade, but the stickers themselves aren’t edible. So don’t eat them.
The PLU code, or the price lookup number on the sticker can help you determine if the product is genetically modified, organic or produced with chemical fertilizers, fungicides or herbicides.
1. A four-digit code beginning with a 3 or a 4 means the produce is probably conventionally grown. The last four letters of the code represent the kind of the fruit or vegetable you are buying. For example, bananas are always labeled with the code of 4011.
2. If there are five numbers, and the first is “8″, then the product is genetically modified. The label on genetically modified banana (GE-genetically engineered of GMO) would contain the numbers 84011.
3. A five-digit number that starts with a 9 means the item is organic. Organic bananas are labeled with 94011.
EWG ( The Environmental Working Group) analyzed pesticide residue testing data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration to come up with rankings for these popular fresh produce items.
The Environmental Protection Agency warns that the consumption of pesticides can lead to health problems such as “birth defects, nerve damage, cancer, and other effects that might occur over a long period of time.” Children are especially at risk of harm from pesticides.
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