Good News: Ben and Jerrys, Whole Foods, and Chipotle all say they will voluntarily label GMO products — where possible . . .

How possible? The problem is, by law, in the U.S. (and in Canada) GMO foods do not have to be identified. (Remember “Proposition 37,” last year’s ill-fated California ballot initiative to label all GMO products?)

“As much as 86% of U.S. corn is GMO.” No wonder Chipotle says they can’t guarantee their corn tortillas are GMO-free. Plus, if you push your cart down the middle aisles of any supermarket, or Whole Foods, or even our local Bloomingfoods coop, there’s likely to be GMO ingredients hiding in the processed food.

Genetically Modified Food – How Can You Tell?

We Currently Eat Genetically Engineered Food, But Don’t Know It

Fact: GMO’s have not been proven safe, and the long-term health risks of genetically modified foods have not been adequately investigated.

We have a right to know what’s in our food. A genetically engineered food is a plant or meat product that has had its DNA artificially altered in a laboratory by genes from other plants, animals, viruses, or bacteria, in order to produce foreign compounds in that food. This type of genetic alteration is not found in nature, and is experimental. The correct scientific term is “transgenics,” and is also often referred to as (GE) genetically engineered.

GMO food is supposed to have a 5 digit PLU code that starts with an 8. Organic PLU codes are 5 numbers that start with a 9. Organic producers/grocers do a good job of labeling their food. The problem is that most GMO food isn’t labelled at all.

Today, as much as 86% of corn in the U.S. is GMO. Genetically Modified corn has been engineered in a laboratory to produce pesticides in its own tissue. GMO Corn is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency as an Insecticide. [EPA Pesticides] Potatoes are also altered with bacteria genes, “super” pigs altered with human growth genes, tomatoes altered with fish genes, and fish altered with cattle growth genes.

According to the Grocery Manufacturer’s Association, 80% of packaged foods contain genetically engineered ingredients – but you wouldn’t know it by reading the labels. GMO crops are also added to processed foods as oils, sweeteners & soy proteins and in things like amino acids, aspartame, vitamin C, flavoring (natural & artificial), maltodextrins and more.

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