Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Know Which Food is Genetically Modfied

[gratefully borrowed from]

One of my friends sent me a great article today on how to know which food is genetically modified, as well as which food is organic, or just conventionally grown.

Did you know that an amazing 80 percent of processed foods are genetically modified? I wasn’t a big fan of processed foods before I read that, but will be even less enthusiastic (if that’s possible) now.

In an article published on, Spencer Cooper tells us the codes to look for in determining what type of food we’re getting. You’re looking for the number in front of the four-digit Price Look Up, or PLU, code on the product you’re about to buy and subsequently put in your mouth. A 9 means organic, an 8 means genetically engineered (GE) or genetically modified (GMO); and just the four-digit code means conventionally grown (i.e. pesticides, chemical fertilizer, stuff like that).

The example Cooper gives us is clarifies all this:
A conventionally-grown banana will have a code of 4011
An organic banana will be 94011
A GE or GMO banana will be 84011

So cool! I had no idea. I buy organic whenever possible, but now will be on the lookout for the telltale eight or missing fifth number.

- Jocelyn Broyles