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Shucking some corn, I was reminded of one of the cognitive biases we have towards things that seem more natural. We prefer “natural flavors” to artificial ones because we think they’re healthier, even if they’re the exact same thing. Artificial vs natural vanilla extract, for example. Maybe it’s not officially a cognitive bias but falls into the Appeal To Natural fallacy. “That which is natural is good and that which is unnatural is bad” is the basis of many reddit and Instagram rants against medicine.

Back to the corn… here I am looking at this packaged corn and the corn has been half shucked. This is more effort for everyone. I still have to shuck the other half and it would have been just as quick for the packager to shuck the other half. I can see the logic, though. The green contrasting with the yellow makes corn look like it’s fresh from the field.

This same strategy is deployed on oranges. Some produce makers leave on the stem and leaf of the orange, making it look more natural.

I don’t necessarily see this as bad, just something we need to be aware of when making our purchase decisions.

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