Jim picked a number of pears, each of which he sold, canned, or poached. If he canned 40 percent more than he poached, and he poached 60 percent less than he sold, approximately what percent of the pears did he sell? A. 30% B. 33% C. 42% D. 49% E. 51%
(E) Let p = the number of pears Jim poached. Since he canned 40% more than he poached, p + 0.4p = 1.4p is the number of pears that Jim canned. Furthermore, because he poached 60% less than what he sold, (1 – 0.6) × (number he sold) = p, or number he sold = p/0.4 = p / (4/10) = p × (10/4) = 2.5p. Adding up these values, we can figure out that Jim picked p + 1.4p + 2.5p = 4.9p pears in all. The percent of pears that he sold = (the number of pears sold)/(total number of pears) = 2.5p / 4.9p = 2.5 / 4.9 = approximately 51%. 
How is the number of pears equal to the number of pears canned + the number of pears poached + the number of pears sold?! Some of the number of pears canned and poached are part of the ones sold!
