The FDA determines what ingredients are important to health and safety that should be listed on a food label. The process of producing foods using biotechnology itself does not trigger any material disclosures that would be required to be listed. However, the FDA policy already requires that if a biotechnology trait produced a protein not expected to be in a certain food, the presence of that protein must be identified on the label. In that case the specific protein, rather than the process used to produce it, is required to be declared on the label. The acronym “GMO” or “genetically modified organism” does not distinguish a product of biotechnology from a product of conventional agriculture as many of the foods we eat were genetically modified through traditional breeding. This is why FDA considers these terms potentially misleading to consumers.
QIf GMOs are not a concern, then why aren't they listed with the rest of the ingredients of a product?
Question submitted By: VeronicaIf GMOs are not a concern, then why aren't they listed with the rest of the ingredients of a product?
I have a bag of apples upc code is 8 83391 00381 8 is this a gmo productThe label says it is certified organic by Washington State Department of Agriculture. I just read in your article that the number 8 signifies GMO and the number 9 (which is not...
Posted on May 6, 2018
Response from: Leah McGrath, RD, LDN, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist • on May 18, 2018
The UPC (Universal Product Code) is a barcode (which has numbers beneath it) which identifies the product and the manufacturer. I think you may be thinking of the PLU (Price Look Up) code which is the 4 or 5 digit number on produce used to link a price with an item. The PLU code is a voluntary program that assigns numbers to produce items, this helps cashiers identify the correct price for a produce item. Growers/Packers can use the number "9" prefix to this 4-digit numeric code to... Read More
Posted on May 10, 2017
Response from: Erin Bell, Ph.D., Compositional Biology Lead • on May 11, 2018
The simple answer is that 20+ years of composition assessments of GMO crops have demonstrated that crop composition is not appreciably affected by the GM process (1). In addition, data collected through that time have indicated that general factors such as the growth environment can contribute to notable variation in component levels (2). Plant agglutinins (or lectins) and amylase inhibitors are examples of anti-nutritional compounds that may be present in crops. The relevance of such a... Read More
Posted on March 18, 2018
Response from: Community Manager, Moderator for GMOAnswers.com • on May 4, 2018
We invite you to check out a similar question on the topic of GM food labeling that has been answered here.