QHow does the Biotechnology Council live up to its first principle, "Respecting people around the world and their right to choose healthy food products that are best for themselves and their families", by opposing GMO labeling of foods? Seems to me we coul

How does the Biotechnology Council live up to its first principle, "Respecting people around the world and their right to choose healthy food products that are best for themselves and their families", by opposing GMO labeling of foods? Seems to me we could better choose the foods we prefer and consider healthy if they were labeled as to GMO. Since more foods lately are GMO than not, they need to be labeled. Please explain.

AExpert Answer

Thank you for this question. I am very glad you asked it.  We absolutely do support the right of consumers to choose food that is healthy and nutritious.  And although we do not sell food products directly to consumers, we support food companies’ decisions to voluntarily label food products for the presence or absence of GMOs, so consumers who wish to can choose food that is not made with GM ingredients. Some companies have opted to use such voluntarily labels such as “USDA Organic."

 

We do support mandatory labeling of food, including GM food, if such food presents a safety risk to a certain population—for example, those allergic to a food ingredient.  We believe the harm in mandating labeling for GM food, just because it is a GM food, is that such a label would convey to consumers that foods made from the farmers’ crops grown with our seeds are less safe than, less nutritious than or somehow different from conventional or organic food.  

 

But there has never been any evidence linking a food-safety or health risk to the consumption of GM foods.  There are hundreds of independent studies that demonstrate this (check out independent studies at Biofortified), in addition to the determinations from scientific and regulatory authorities around the world that GM foods on the market are as safe and nutritious as their non-GM counterparts [see FDA information here]. A few studies have asserted that such a risk exists, but each of these studies has been found not to be credible, essentially “debunked” by the global scientific community.  

 

Examples can be found here:

 

Posted on June 19, 2017
Yes, the EU is one of the geographies where GM-derived food and animal feed must be labeled according to conditions outlined by the European Commission on this webpage. GM labels are very common on sacks of animal feed. Depending on the type of animal, GM labeled feed is often the standard – except of course when it comes to GM free or organic supply chains. Read More
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Posted on August 18, 2017
Vitamins can be made from natural or synthetic substances and can also involve the use of bacteria, some of this can be derived from genetically engineered substances. Find more information here.   In order for a supplement to be "non-GMO" the manufacturer or brand that uses the vitamins would have to be able to trace multiple aspects of how the vitamins are made. If the supplement manufacturer elects to use "non-GMO" sources and label... Read More
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Posted on August 15, 2017
No! However, poor nutrition coupled with highly processed foods and a lack of education regarding healthy eating is bad for our kids. As a mother and farmer, I believe the best way to keep my family safe and healthy is to make sure they eat a balanced diet and make good food choices daily. Fresh, healthy ingredients and minimally processed foods that are low in sugar, salt, calories and cholesterol provide kids with the best opportunity for a healthy diet. Agricultural biotechnology... Read More
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