You know those stickers that can be found on most fruits and veggies in grocery stores worldwide? If youve ever bought produce from a grocery chain, youll recognize the ones were talking about. Im sure for some of us who used to or currently work in a grocery store, those stickers are burned into our minds (I am one of those people). They usually have a a bar code on them for scanning and a PLU code, which helps your friendly neighborhood cashier identify what type of produce youre buying.

But these unassuming stickers are more telling than youd think. While the PLU is the price lookup number and identifies the fruit or veggie, it also helps to identify something else: how the produce was grown. By correctly reading this code, you can tell if the fruit was genetically modified, organically grown or produced with chemical fertilizers, fungicides, or herbicides

The story behind where your fruits and vegetables actually came from has been right under your nose all along! You just have to know how to analyze the labels and the PLU number. Its actually a lot easier than youd imagine

Heres the basics of what you need to know about the truth behind PLU codes.

If there are only four numbers in the PLU, this means that the produce was grown conventionally or traditionally with the use of pesticides.

The last four letters (or only four, in this case) of the PLU code are simply what kind of vegetable or fruit youre buying. An example is that all bananas are labeled with the code of 4011.

If there are five numbers in the PLU code, and the number starts with 8, this tells you that the item is a genetically modified fruit or vegetable.

Genetically modified fruits and vegetables have been tampered with in an unnatural way; essentially, produce that has been genetically modified was created in a lab or over decades of artificial selection, and cannot be found in nature. A genetically engineered (GE or GMO) banana would be:

If there are five numbers in the PLU code, and the number starts with 9, this tells you that the produce was grown organically and is not genetically modified.

Interestingly enough, the adhesive used to attach the stickers is considered food-grade, but the stickers themselves arent safe to consume.

If youre looking to be hyper aware of what fruits and vegetables have been treated with pesticides and other chemicals and which have not, youll want to check out the homepage for theEnvironmental Working Groups. The EWG has compiled two lists to help consumers identify which produce is generally cleaner and which produce is generally tampered with; theClean Fifteenand the Dirty Dozen.

For the full lists, food news, and additional food rankings, make sure to check out theEWG online.

What do you think of this sticker revelation? Will this change how you shop for produce? Share your thoughts on this in the comments section below. For more information, check out this informative video below on the truth behind food labeling.

Heres Why Prince Charles Didnt Marry Camilla in the First Place

Heres What Jon, Kate, and Their 8 Kids Looks Like Today

Heres How to Get a Reading with Theresa Caputo and How Much It Costs

Melissa McCarthy Shows Off Her Weight Loss in Stunning New Instagram Photos

Theres an Enormous Lake in Michigan That Looks Like a Tropical Caribbean Paradise

How to Clear Your Sinuses in Seconds Using Nothing But Your Fingers

Mom Gives a Chilling Warning After Her Child Was Nearly Abducted From a Highway Rest Stop

The Dangers of the New Juuling Craze in Schools

Subway is Closing Down Hundreds of Locations Amid Backlash

If You Have Knee Pain, You Have To Try This Stretch

11 Signs of Lyme Disease You Need to Know

Heres Why Youre a Mosquito Magnet

Cop Arrives At Home Where Child Abuse Is Reported, and Ends Up Meeting His Son

A Lump Isnt the Only Symptom of Breast Cancer. Here Are 7 More Symptoms You Need to Know.

What Happens When You Put Salt in Your Coffee

Avoid Your PIN Being Stolen at the Store with This Trick

Mix Dish Soap with Just One Other Ingredient and Your Shower Will Be Spotless

10 Problems You Didnt Know You Could Solve with Vinegar

Family Turns Heads By Writing a Brutally Honest Obituary

Heres Why Prince Charles Didnt Marry Camilla in the First Place

What Happens if You Put Ice Cubes on Your Burgers

22 Modern Chicken Casseroles Thatll Make Your Mom Jealous

Get the latest life tips & hacksin your inboxfor free!