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Thread: Cryptic Product Packaging Symbols and Codes

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Cryptic Product Packaging Symbols and Codes

    Take a look at an average pop can. It is covered with all sorts of alpha-numeric sequences, abbreviations and symbols. Maybe I'm just strange but does anyone else ever try to figure out what all the various mysterious numbers and symbols found on packaging mean (especially food packaging it seems)? Recycling codes are usually pretty obvious but even then there are excpetions like that symbol you see on cans sometimes that looks kinda like West Virginia.

    When I was a kid it seemed that practically everything you bought at the grocery store had "Reg. Penna. Dept. Agr." on it. You hardly ever see it anymore. I'm sure we can all guess it stands (stood?) for "Registered Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture" but so what - who gives a rip about Penna. when you live in Mich. or Cali.?

    Ever see this symbol?

    usually it has the deeply esoteric word "PAREVE" nearby

    Or how about this one?


    And let me know if anyone has figured out what each number in UPC codes means too, okay?
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian Plus PlannerGirl's avatar
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    its all Kosher :-)

    Your kidding right? Those are all kosher markings to ID what level of Kosher something is and who gave it the Kosher status

    http://kosherfood.about.com/od/guide.../symbols_3.htm
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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by PlannerGirl
    Your kidding right?
    Moi, kid? I did have to find the images to begin with ya know.

    If you thought the meaning of those symbols was very obvious, I'm guessing you're Jewish? I don't believe most Cyburbians would know that - certainly not a goy like myself.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister
    Ever see this symbol?

    usually it has the deeply esoteric word "PAREVE" nearby
    There's local kashers too.



    Around here, you'll find this sign on many locally produced food products, and on several restaurants in my neighborhood.



    Some Orthodox Jews are really picky about kashrut; they might not eat food with a certain kasher on it, because their rabbi tells them that particular kasrut authority isn't strict enough.

    There's also halal marks, but in the US they're far less common than Kosher kashers. Generally, most kosher food is halal, but not all halal food is kosher.

    Next time you're browsing through your local Pennysaver or other coupon clipper paper where local businesses advertise, notice how many plant a Jesus fish somewhere in the ad - especially in smaller towns. I've seen jesus fish on store-brought products, too.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian mgk920's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan
    Some Orthodox Jews are really picky about kashrut; they might not eat food with a certain kasher on it, because their rabbi tells them that particular kasrut authority isn't strict enough.

    There's also halal marks, but in the US they're far less common than Kosher kashers. Generally, most kosher food is halal, but not all halal food is kosher.

    Next time you're browsing through your local Pennysaver or other coupon clipper paper where local businesses advertise, notice how many plant a Jesus fish somewhere in the ad - especially in smaller towns. I've seen jesus fish on store-brought products, too.
    Interestingly, in the more 'level-headed' parts of the world, it is not at all unusual for Muslims to buy food from Kosher stores, because the dietary requirements of the two are so close.

    One of the main differences, from what I am aware of, is that to be 'Kosher', the food must pass actual inspection by a rabbi, while the converse is not necessary with Halal.

    Mike

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    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    When it comes to meat there is a slight difference between kashrut and halal. While both kashrut and halal both agree on the method of slaughter of an animal it is different in the blessing of the animal before slaughter. Kashrut allows one single overarching blessing to be done if a large slaughter is taking place as long as the activity is continuous, but halal requires each animal to be blessed before its slaughter. Also kashrut is more restrictive on the types of meat that can be eaten and halal is a bit more relaxed in not adhering to the cud chewing-cloven hoved requirement.
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    We are surrounded by symbols, however it is far less than it was at one point in time when the general population could not read. From the barbershop pole to the golden arches symbols have become synonymous with many of the products that we consume today.

    Even our avatars are more or less symbols. *mine is reprehensive of hockey greatness and tradition!
    "The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism." - George Washington

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    Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture

    http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a1_343.html

    Pennsylvania has laws to say that food sold there has to meet certain standards to be sold there. To indicate that it meets the standards and is legal for sale, the packages get labelled with "Reg. Penn. Dept. Agr.". Rather than sell separate packages in Pennsylvania as elsewhere, all the packages get labelled that way, whether it matters or not.

    Kind of similar to how pop cans are labelled with how much the recycling value is in every state where the can is sold and can be returned for a nickel or a dime, etc. Rather than paint the cans differently for each state, they put all the data for the area where they might be sold on the same can.

  9. #9
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by michaelskis
    *mine is reprehensive of hockey greatness and tradition!
    OMG!! Can I quote you on that?
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian wahday's avatar
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    This is slightly peripheral, but I recently got one of the new Gatorade bottles that boasts a new design. The label claims something about enhanced rehydration through design so people can get "it" in them faster. Was it really so slow before?!

    I couldn't find an image of the label (which includes a bizarre symbol as well), but did find this:

    E.D.G.E. (Ergonomically Designed Gatorade Experience) bottle

    Marie Devlin, director of Gatorade product offering, emphasizes that this new 24-ounce package represents "true consumer innovation. We're taking functionality and ergonomics and applying them to a beverage container in a new way to create a better drinking experience for people on the go."

    Wow
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