Fruit and Veggie PLU Codes

just another fuji apple

I feel annoyed when apple has small sticker label. Often, after washing and began munching, a small piece of paper clings to my teeth. It is not biggie when I noticed beforehand. I simply scrape it off with knife. However, they are usually small and bear the same shade as the fruit skin. I guess, I just have to inspect carefully and stop being lazy.

just another fuji apple

The fruit label is there for number of reasons.

A small and simple is for brand identification and promotion. If the produce is good. Then you know which to look for the next time you step in the grocery store. If you’re not satisfied. Choose something else then and avoid the err brand.

Black and white labels with stripe or somewhat checkered pattern are bar code and QR code respectively. They are means used by POS machines (point of sale). Do you observe the cashier passing your chosen goods rapidly via dim red light. The product identifications and prices and read and sum up by computer. Otherwise, the cashier, need to look it one by one and manually compute the sum. A tedious task for the company and inconvenience to you and other customers. There are several POS machines and you still need to wait in line. Imagine if this mechanism has not been invented!

There is more. The PLU or Price Look Up code. It tells more about the commodity. Not only price, brand and origin but also the manner it was produced. It is sure very useful to health conscious individuals. If he knows the code meanings, then he can choose organically grown and avoid those label with pesticides.

PLU system is implemented by IFPS, International Federation for Produce Standards. It compose of 4 to 5 digits, but the prefix or the first digit number is all you want to know about.

PLU code starting numbers:

3: Irradiated.
4: Conventionally grown. Sprayed with pesticides.
6: Precut, fruits and vegetables.
8: Genetically modified organisms.
9: Organic.

I think there is only one thing to remember. The prefix 9. Safety of prefix 6 is not clear. Better forget it as well.

More reads:

If You See This Label On A Fruit, DO NOT Buy It At Any Cost. Here’s Why …