Non-GMO Month at Whole Foods Market
GMOs – Genetically Modified Organisms – refer to plants, animals or micro-organisms whose genetic material has been altered. Genetically modified foods are developed because they may cost less or have more nutritional value, for example. Crops may be modified to increase their resistance against plant diseases or boost their tolerance toward herbicides.
But many people are concerned about their safety, citing health and environmental risks of GMO foods. This awareness has led to creation of Non-GMO Month – October. And at all 26 Whole Foods Market locations, customers can taste non-GMO products October 15 at their “Get to Know Non-GMO” event. From 11am-1pm, highlighted Non-GMO verified foods include:
• Prepared Foods: Non-GMO Decadent Deviled Egg Salad
· Bakery: Non-GMO Jacqueline's Bakery Cookies with options of Chocolate Chip, Oatmeal Raisin, Peanut Butter or Vegan Chocolate Chip
· Grocery: Non-GMO 365 Everyday Value® Organic Apple Juice and Whole Foods Market Organic Mulling Spice
· Whole Body: Non-GMO Gaia Black Elderberry Punch
· Produce: Organic Kale & Apple Sauté
· Meat: Non-GMO Roasted Crystal Lakes Whole Fryer Chicken
· Seafood: Responsibly Farmed Key Lime Cooked Shrimp (Peeled & Deveined)
· Specialty: Non-GMO Le Gruyere Fondue
It’s part of Whole Foods Market’s response to shoppers who are looking to avoid GMOs. “We believe our customers have a right to know what’s in their food,” says Briana Madrid, associate marketing coordinator for Whole Foods Market – Florida region. “That’s why we set a 2018 deadline for GMO transparency in our U.S. and Canadian stores. We currently offer thousands of options for shoppers who are looking to avoid GMOs, including more than 25,000 certified organic choices (organic certification prohibits the intentional use of GMOs) and more than 8,500 non-GMO Project Verified products.
The non-GMO Project Verified program uses on-site facility audits, document-based review and product testing to verify compliance throughout the supply chain. “For a product to be verified and bear the seal, it must undergo a process through which any ingredient at high risk for GMO contamination — soy or corn, for example — has been proven to meet the standard through avoidance practices and testing,” Madrid says.
The online Quick Start Guide on How to Shop if You’re Avoiding GMOs details what items to choose, including dairy, produce, seafood, meat, packaged and prepared foods, bakery goods, cheese, wine, beer and body care products. “We want to provide as much information as we can to help our customers make informed decisions,” says Madrid.
For more information about the Non-GMO Project, visit www.nongmoproject.org