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Question

Regardless of the need for it... Whats the outlook for demand in Non GMO edible oils for 2016 to 2020 given all the Non GMO popularity at retail see recent WSJ article where Non GMO claims surpassed Organic httpwww.wsj.comarticlesorganicvsnongmolabelswhoswinning1449619118

Submitted by: smpizza


Answer

Expert response from Dr. Stuart Smyth

Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan

Friday, 11/03/2016 11:49

Oils fall into a separate category regarding labeling between GM and non-GM. The reason for this is that oil contains no protein. This means that it is impossible to tell the source of the oil as to be able to test, protein is required. With no protein in the oil, labeling between GM and non-GM become very arbitrary, as the ability to determine with accuracy the validity of the label becomes impossible and consumers have to rely on their trust in the company producing the oil.

 

Many countries that have mandatory labelling requirements have established a level of 5% for oil. This means that up to 5% of the oil can come from a GM oil crop in the case of a non-GM marketed product. This higher level indicates the difficulty in testing for the presence of oil from a GM crop and so the threshold is set quite high to ensure that supplies of non-GM oil are not hampered by a low tolerance threshold.

 

There is presently a small demand for non-GM oil that is presently being served by non-GM soybean production. I don’t see this rising or changing much over the next few years. Since we don’t directly consume oil, the focus of GMO labelling is on products that are directly consumable or constitute a greater percentage of a product’s ingredients than oil does.

Answer

Expert response from Connie Diekman

MEd, RD, LD, FADA

Friday, 11/03/2016 11:48

As a registered dietitian I cannot address the market economy but what I can tell you is that physically and nutritionally GMO and Non GMO oils are exactly the same so there is no reason from the standpoint of performance, health or nutrient composition to choose one over the other. As oils are processed from the seed the DNA, the genetics of the seed, are destroyed by the heat of the processing so that chemically you cannot detect the genetic engineering.

 

I do know that many people believe that genetic engineering results in a different product but in fact, because the process occurs at the seed level the oil from the seed is identical to Non GMO oils.