QIs there any indicator in the bar code number sequence to indicate that GMOs are present in a food? I am worried about my families (and environment) health and safety and am starting to read scientific claims that are showing that GMOs are not safe in th

Is there any indicator in the bar code number sequence to indicate that GMOs are present in a food? I am worried about my families (and environment) health and safety and am starting to read scientific claims that are showing that GMOs are not safe in the short term: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/08/06/genetic-modification.aspx?e_cid=20130811_SNL_MS_1&utm_source=snl&utm_medium=email&utm_content=ms1&utm_campaign=20130811 This site should reference these articles too, so we can have a better perspective.

AExpert Answer

Currently, a voluntary system is available for retailers to designate GM and organic produce. This system is similar to the voluntary kosher label to assist consumers in making religious rather than health-related choices.  Health related labels are mandatory and required by the U.S. FDA.  SKU Produce Look-Ups or PLUs that start with the number 8 designate GM produce, and PLUs that start with the number 9 indicate that the produce is organic. For example, the PLU code for a standard yellow banana is 4011 while an organically grown standard yellow banana would be 94011.This system was developed by the Produce Marketing Association. It is an example of a voluntary system that already exists and could be more widely adopted if retailers chose to do so (Source: GMO Answers Explore Section).

 

Many myths and misconceptions about the safety of GMOs exist and have been extensively addressed on GMO Answers (see prior answers about GMO Safety here and in our GMOs and Health Section).

 

Scientific bodies globally, as authoritative as the World Health Organization, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the US National Academy of Sciences, the European Food Safety Authority, Food Standards Australia New Zealand, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, among many others, have all found that GM foods available today are as safe and nutritious as their non-GM counterparts, that there is no inherent reason that genetic modification would create unknown hazards, and that no effects on human health have been shown as a result of consuming GM food.

 

Such scientific consensus is similar to that on global climate change and belies claims repeated in the article you cite that are based on a small number of poorly conducted experiments and misinterpretations of data.  Given your concerns, you may want to look at the more than 600 safety studies that have been conducted on GMOs that confirm that there is no greater health risk between GM crops and non-GMO crops for you and your family. 

 

Go here to see the list of studies.

Posted on December 7, 2017
The term “GMO” typically refers to crops or animals that, through genetic engineering, have had a gene (or a few genes) from a different species inserted into their genome. This is by design to improve a crop or animal with genetic engineering. In fact, me and my colleagues recently published a paper on this very topic that addresses this very topic and gives more details on the plant selection practices used for GE crops.   However, you pick up on something very... Read More
Answer:
Posted on December 7, 2017
Nearly all foods today have been genetically modified or altered in some way over thousands of years through selective breeding. However, there are only 10 commercially available GMO crops in the U.S: soybeans, corn (field and sweet), canola, cotton, alfalfa, sugar beets, summer squash, papaya, potatoes and apples.   Below is a table outlining what year the nine crops became commercially available:   Squash 1995 Cotton 1996... Read More
Posted on November 17, 2017
When people refer to Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), they are referring to precision plant breeding using genetic engineering. It allows plant breeders to take a desirable trait (like resistance to drought, insects, weeds, and disease) from one plant or organism and transfer it to the plant they want to improve, as well as make a change to an existing trait in a plant they are developing. You may have also heard of agricultural biotechnology or biotech seeds.... Read More
Answer: