Most of us don’t know that the stickers attached to the fruits and vegetables are there for more than just scanning the price.
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.
Fruits and Vegetables to Always Buy Organic
The Dirty Dozen Plus
These foods have really high pesticide loads and should always be purchased organic.
- Cherry Tomatoes
- Hot Peppers
- Nectarines (imported)
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Kale/Collard Greens
- Summer Squash
These foods are relatively safe and do not have to be purchased organic if you are on a budget.
- Sweet Corn (not to be confused with potentially GMO canned corn)
- Sweet Peas
- Sweet Potatoes
The EWG also notes that 99 percent of apples, 98 percent of peaches and 97 percent of nectarines all tested positive for at least one pesticide residue, while the average (white) potato had more pesticides by weight than any other produce!
The EWG ranks 48 produce items from most pesticide to least pesticide HERE.
Article originally published on LivingTraditionally.com republished with permission
A quick note from our founder-
Over the past year, my friend Dave at PaleoHacks has been working on a secret cookbook with world-renowned Le Cordon Bleu chef Peter Servold.
Well, today this new this new incredible Paleo Cookbook is finally available to be shipped right to your door for FREE
That’s right — as a special launch promotion, we’re offering our brand new Paleo fat loss cookbook to you for free (Chef Pete lost 60 lbs using these recipes!) — All you have to do is just cover a small shipping cost (international shipping is a bit more).
Get your FREE copy of Paleo Eats Here. (Grab this today, because we only ordered a small batch of these cookbooks for this freebie promotion, and they will sell out FAST!)