Expert response from Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, MS, RD
Former MS, RD Public Affairs, Monsanto Company
Thursday, 31/10/2013 14:54
As a mom and a dietitian, I use labels regularly to help me make healthful food choices for my family and to help others make food decisions that correspond with their health goals. The food label is an important and trusted tool that highlights both nutrition and safety information for consumers; in addition, the label can also convey other information, including how certain foods or ingredients were grown.
At Monsanto, we have always supported voluntary food labeling. We believe food companies and retailers should be able to provide the information they believe interests their customers – as long as it is truthful and not misleading. Today, hundreds of products labeled organic or certified non-GM are available for consumers who prefer these products. This approach provides choices for every consumer, making it easy to find specific products like organic and non-GM.
We have opposed labeling initiatives that are misleading consumers about the safety of GM foods. Proponents of these initiatives have admitted that their goal is not just to require a label on such foods, but to ultimately ban these foods altogether. We take seriously the stated goal of some mandatory labeling proponents to eliminate all biotech-improved crops from the market and deprive our farmer customers of choice and beneficial farming practices. These proponents are waging a campaign of fear tactics and misinformation about the safety and benefits of these crops. While we respect that some people may choose to avoid GM ingredients, it is wrong to mislead and scare people about the safety of their food choices.