ConAgra Foods and Kellogg’s Join Growing Number of Companies Voluntarily Labeling GMOs

gmo_labeling_By Derrick Broze

Food giants ConAgra Foods and Kellogg’s have announced that they will begin voluntarily labeling their products which contain Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs).

ConAgra and Kellogg’s will soon begin labeling their food products which contain Genetically Modified or Engineered Organisms. The announcement comes in response to Vermont’s recently passed GMO labeling law, which goes into effect in July 2016. In a statement provided to Agri-Pulse, Kellogg North America President Paul Norman said some of the company’s products would be labeled “Produced with Genetic Engineering” as soon as mid-April. Norman said the labels will appear nationwide “because a special label for Vermont would be costly for us and our consumers.”

“We stand behind the health and safety of all of our products, including those with genetically modified ingredients, and believe consumers should be informed as to what’s in their food,” ConAgra Foods said in a statement. ConAgra agreed with Kellogg, stating that state-by-state labels would be costly and complicated. The company also called on Congress to pass a “national solution  as quickly as possible.”

The announcement comes on the heels of a similar decision from Mars Incorporated, the company that owns many popular chocolate candy brands. The company will label its products nationwide, including M&M’s, SNICKERS, Dove, Galaxy, Mars, Milky Way, TWIX, 3 MUSKETEERS and more.  A week before, General Mills’ announced that it would voluntarily label products containing genetically-modified or engineered ingredients.

Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President for General Mills’ U.S. Retail, Jeff Harmening, said the company could not exclusively label their products in Vermont without driving up the cost for consumers. Harmening also said GM was disappointed that a national solution has not been reached.

One “national solution” that has been proposed is Senate Bill 2609, or the Biotech Labeling Solutions Act. The legislation, introduced by Senator Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) in late February, would create a federal voluntary standard for labeling genetically modified or engineered ingredients, and block mandatory labeling efforts by states. GE seeds are engineered to have certain traits, such as resistance to herbicides. The majority of the United States’ corn and soybean crops are now GE, including a large portion that is used for animal feed.

The bill recently failed to reach the 60 votes needed during a procedural vote, with 49 votes in favor and 48 votes against. The bill would “amend the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 to require the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a national voluntary labeling standard for bioengineered foods.”

Roberts’ bill is similar to the controversial Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act, which passed the House in June 2015. To critics, the bill was known as the “DARK” (Deny Americans the Right to Know) Act because the law would have effectively nullified GE labeling measures, such as the Vermont bill. Senator Roberts’ bill would prevent the Vermont bill from becoming law. Lawmakers say that a new bill is necessary to avoid a “patchwork” of laws that vary from state to state. Maine and Connecticut have also passed laws requiring labeling, but those measures will not go into effect until bordering states also pass legislation.

Whole Foods Market Inc, Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc and Campbell Soup Co have also begun voluntarily labeling products with genetically engineered ingredients. Perhaps the companies recognize that involving the U.S. government will only create more problems, especially when the government is so heavily interlaced with biotechnology companies like Monsanto. It appears as if companies are finally recognizing that the American people want to know what is in their food. As Anti Media recently noted, it seems as if “Vermont, one of the smallest states in the Union, might have just managed a coup for consumers”  by being bold enough to pass a labeling law that is inadvertently persuading food manufacturers to voluntarily label their products.

What are your thoughts on GMOs? Are they safe or a health hazard? Do you support labeling? Should labeling be voluntary or mandatory? Leave your thoughts below.

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Derrick Broze is an investigative journalist and liberty activist. He is the Lead Investigative Reporter for ActivistPost.com and the founder of the TheConsciousResistance.com. Follow him on Twitter.

Derrick is available for interviews.

This article may be freely reposted in part or in full with author attribution and source link.

  • locutus_of_klingons

    I have to say this is surprising. maybe the bribes weren’t big enough

    • jhnjul

      Not surprising at all. Self preservation. Once stigmatized it will be hard to recover. They all will start producing more organic options too, otherwise they will steadily lose market share.

      • knifemare69

        Free Market: 1, Corporate Scumbags: 0

    • Brett

      The big bribes will come. One would suspect BIG PHARMA is lurking in the corridors too, because, crap food = crap health. And crap health = constant sickness and meds. Perfect recipe!

  • Fungus

    some of the company’s products would be labeled “Produced with Genetic Engineering”

  • jhnjul

    If they have any sense they will all start moving away from gmo’s altogether as more and more studies will link them to an assortment of ailments already prevalent in society. Lawsuits will be the next thing Congress makes harder to bring against these biotech giants.

  • Likeymikey

    I have to say that this is an issue that as bad as it is, it’s amazing that even reading it.. voluntary labeling, laws…food to eat. Just a little bit improper, unbelievable and to the bold point of even having to go down this yellow brick road and how far it is … going down …that is. Tiptoe and be nice and just ask….you know, maybe they will.

  • JMG

    This is a white flag from these big food companies to try and lure consumers back to them. Aside from the GMO’s, they are known to use chemical fillers in their foods to increase profits. The fact that the DARK billed passed and revelations such as the water in Flint, MI, have demonstrated that the government does not care about the health of the general population. Given the attitude of the government, any food labeling at all may be a mute point.

    • petunia

      The DARK bill did not pass. It was defeated.
      General Mills stated a few years back that they would make Cheerios gmo free in response to the huge volume of complaints from mothers who feed their babies Cheerios as their first finger food. They never did. Now, they will just warn and label the boxes? Gross failure.

      • JMG

        I was referring to the portion of the article that said that it passed the House, but it did not say it was defeated. Thank goodness for that!

  • The voice

    They know a majority of people do not read labels, so they figure the dumbed down public will buy their food regardless. With all the information about HFCS I still see people buying dozens of liters of bottles sodas at the supermarket and 44 oz big gulps for them and their kids

    • CAWS

      You are so right. They have finally realized they are throwing good money after bad. Instead of fighting this they will launch campaigns to “educate us on the “scientifically proven benefits of GMO” to continue sales. This is Hillary’s & Cruz’s plan. Both work for & supported by the industry. Donald will take whatever bribes offered. Bernie is the only one that is fighting it from Vermont.
      This worked with the” HCFS is the same as sugar” commercials. USA population is very gullible & most never read labels. Plus the cost of food will continue to rise so as to make organic too costly & they will keep buying out the OG companies , perverting the standards for certification and making OG unavailable by polluting neighboring farm fields as they have done for decades. Better plant a garden now.

      • Brett

        Good post…

    • Joan Camara

      I hate to see people at the grocery store buy all of that food, and those BIG sodas. It’s sooo sad, I wish I could tell them, to go buy only ORGANIC fruits, and vegetables. There’s organic boxes, and bagged food in most grocery stores now, in the brand of food they love too. Eat and drink as much ORGANIC as you can, and stay away from all those chemicals, and GMO’s, that are in 95% of everything that’s in that grocery store.

  • Strayhorse

    Citizens also demand that all food and beverage products be labeled identifying Glyphosate in that product.

  • gweneth

    At least this is a step in the right direction.
    Kellogs – who wudda thought.
    It’s heart warming to know that the gmo folks kaint tell organic folks not to label.
    They are feeling the pressure – I read every label carefully – generally want fresh veggies and yak or buffalo for red meat and cage free chickens and eggs – which reminds me of the movie Food Inc – that poor chicken grower probably lost her contract with tyson’s – Kudos to her for getting the word out.

  • GrandmaAmerica

    Too late for me Kelloggs. You could have step forward years ago and you didn’t. Now when others have made the grand gesture you feel you have no choice. Whats the matter, sales going down. Our once trusted companies have let us down. Time to give the little guy a chance.

    • Brett

      Agree!

  • Joan Camara

    These companies are more than likely lying, or hiding something else. They would never tell the truth. They want as many chemicals as they can get in us. I refuse to eat 95% of any grocery store food. I eat and drink ONLY organic! And I keep abreast of which organic companies are sleeping with Monsatan.

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