Monday, January 16, 2012

How to Figure Out if Your Produce is Organic or Genetically Modified

Grocery stores are quick to advertise nowadays if the produce they're selling is organic, but rarely (if ever) market the fact that your onion or apple is genetically modified. However, the PLU sticker or sign accompanying the item will—if you know how to read it.

According to the International Federation for Produce Standards, there is a set number system to show whether your item is a GMO (genetically modified organism), or conventionally or organically grown. This information isn't new, but most shoppers aren't aware of how to use it.

The PLU (stands for price look-up) code is used on items that are sold loose or bunched, by weight or by each (i.e. an individual apple or bunch of greens). A PLU code contains 4-5 digits total and is key-entered at the register.

Here is the simple breakdown for identifying what your buying:

ORGANIC - The number 9 is added to the front of the regular four digit PLU code (e.g. an organically grown banana would be 94011).

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