As a health conscious individual, it is important for me to thoroughly check the produce I will consume or share with my love ones. My family’s health depends on my choices that’s why I turned out to be meticulous when it comes to foods. I also want others to be more aware about foods as we are taking it in. Its is preferable to stay organic so I am personally reading labels first if it has organic label. Now, the challenging part is how to tell if our food is Conventional, GMO or Organic. These are the best guidelines to follow:
You just can’t pick and eat anything nowadays. It is very important to know where your food comes from. Of course you can’t locate the origin of a fruit especially if you just bought it from the market or if it’s not locally grown. But there is still a way. Just by reading its label, you can be able to identify where your food is coming from, through this key indicators!
There are 3 types of organic products; 100% organic, organic, and made with organic ingredients.
- 100% Organic – this produce is made with 100% organic ingredients. These are the highest quality of Organic products.
- Organic – this produce is made with at least 95% organic ingredients.
- Made with Organic Ingredients – aside from 100% Organic and Organic, products labeled with Made with Organic Ingredients are made with at least 70% organic ingredients. The remaining 30% adheres to strict restrictions and won’t contain GMO’s or additives. However, these products don’t have USDA Seal but still called as organic.
The sticker in every food you found on stores is also important for us, organic consumers, to identify if it’s conventional, GMO or organic. This is called the PLU code, or price lookup number printed on the sticker. Here are the basics of what you should know:
- If there are only four numbers in the PLU, this means that the produce was grown conventionally or “traditionally” with the use of pesticides. Look at the image below. The last four digits of the PLU code are simply what kind of vegetable or fruit. A conventionally grown apple has this code: 4131
- If there are five numbers in the PLU code, and the number starts with “8”, this means that the item is a genetically modified organism or GMO. It is impossible to eat organic produce that are grown from genetically modified seeds so organic eaters must not get worried. For more added details on GMO, read here. A genetically modified apple would be 84131
- If there are five numbers in the PLU code, and the number starts with “9”, this means that the produce was grown organically and is not genetically modified. This is the code that you have to remember or be familiar with. An organic apple would be 94131
Now you can go to the grocers confidently and assured that you bought safe foods for you and your family. And here is a list of foods you may not eat organic or with lesser pesticides and chemicals. As an organic advocate, it is also important to be still on the budget without sacrificing the quality of foods.