By: Forrest Scharf (PAg) Provincial Specialist, Fruit Crops
The International Federation for Produce Standards (IFPS) is an organization composed of national produce organizations. IFPS was previously known as The International Federation for Produce Coding (IFPC), which was an international coalition of fruit and vegetable associations that joined together in 2001 to introduce global standards for the use of international Price Look-Up (PLU) numbers.
It was perceived that the industry needed to improve supply chain efficiencies from field to consumers, to ensure the right products were getting to the right places, at the right time. Ensuring proper product identification also helped improve food safety standards and reduced spoilage.
The IFPS developed PLU code assignment criteria that are available here. In order to qualify for a new code, a commodity must be a fresh fruit or vegetable that does not already have an assigned code, be in an unprocessed form, and be sold at retail stores.
IFPS recently released a PLU search app that can be downloaded onto smart phones from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. In the Apple store, the search should be for “Fresh PLU”; in the Google Play Store it should be “FreshPLU”.