How To Read Your Fruit Stickers

Meg Hourigan, co-founder of Blogger, has posted a methodology for decoding fruit labels to discern whether or not it is conventional, organic or genetically-modified.

The way it works is this: if the sticker on your banana or cherry has four digits, it’s conventional. If it has five digits and starts with an eight, it’s GE. If it starts with a nine, it’s organic. We hope all our readers have five digits starting with nine — you may want to tear the sticker off before a date, though.

We don’t personally have a problem with GE foods: not only do we feel that the opposition to GE foods has overstated its case to the point of absurdity, but we think its a valuable method to feed the world’s hungry, most of whom simply can’t be fed by organic methods. That said, we love living in a country where we have the choice to eat purely organic foods if we choose. Consequently, while we’re glad there’s a way to determine whether a fruit is organic or not, we wish the labeling was more transparent. Counting digits and looking at what number your sticker starts with is an awfully convoluted way of getting across what could be much more clearly stated simply by printing the word “Organic” on the sticker. Of course, we’re sure it’s this convoluted and confusing for a reason — they don’t really want you to know what you’re buying.

Read The Numbers On Your Fruit [MegNut]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.