Selecting is one of the most complicated of the 39 Melachot, mostly because the prohibition includes separating unwanted portions of food by hand.

Thus, for example, if one is eating berries, he may not pick out the bad ones before eating the good ones, but rather take them one at a time, the good from the bad. It is likewise permitted to peel fruits and vegetables for immediate consumption.

'Selecting' also forbids one to pick the bones out of fish. This is one reason for the custom of eating Gefilte Fish on Shabbat, since the bones are already removed.

If one must remove something inedible, a small amount of food should be removed along with it.

The spirit of this category also forbids all sorts of sorting and filing activities.

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Most of this information is taken from the book "SABBATH Day of Eternity" by Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan, published by NCSY. In the book itself, there are notes that refer the reader to detailed footnotes. I am lucky to have found such a clear, concise manual with these brief overviews of laws so vast and complex there are Rabbis that specialize in them.

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