Archive for the ‘GMO’ Category

GMO Apples

Saturday, April 30th, 2016


By Catherine Haug, April 30, 2016 (image, right, from Organic Consumers’ Association (4), used with permission)

A variety of GMO apple has been approved for a while now – the Arctic Apple in two varieties, Granny Smith and Golden Delicious (3); its DNA has been modified to keep it from turning brown once the apple is cut or sliced. You probably won’t see this in the produce section (at least not at first), but if you eat commercial products containing cooked apples, or prepped fresh fruit plates, you may be unwittingly eating this GMO apple.

It may sound harmless enough – at least it isn’t GMO to allow being heavily sprayed with insecticides – but it may actually be even worse than the pesticides. (more…)

2015 Dirty Dozen (pesticide-laden fruits, veggies) and Clean 15

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016
Apples at Market

Apples at Market

By Catherine Haug, April 13, 2016; updated April 27 to add the Clean 15 (image, right, from Wikimedia Commons)

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has published it’s annual “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean 15” lists based on tests on over 7,000 samples (non-Organic) around the country during 2014. Dirty Dozen are fruits and vegetables with the highest levels of pesticide residue, and Clean 15 are those with the lowest levels; the tests do not include seeds and grains, just fresh produce. (1,2) Compare this with  2013 “Dirty Dozen” – Foods best as Organic published in 2013.

They also added a new category: Dirty Dozen Plus, which may not have had high levels of pesticides, but those they found were particularly toxic. (1,2)

Note that these tests are on non-organic produce. To avoid the toxic pesticides, always choose Organic when you can. (more…)

More Big Food companies pledge to label GMOs

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016


By Catherine Haug, March, 2016 (Image, right, used with permission from the Organic Consumers Association (2))

Despite efforts by congress to pass the DARK act (Deny Americans the Right to Know), which would stop Vermont from implementing their mandatory labeling law and prevent other states from following in their steps, Big Food is moving away from their opposition to labeling, with intent to begin labeling products that contain GMOs. First it was Campbell’s (see A win in the GMO battle: Campbell’s will voluntarily label GMOs), and now General Mills, Kellogg’s and Mars are following suit.

One of Big Food’s arguments against labeling has been that the cost would be prohibitive and would be passed on to the consumers. However, those companies that have crossed the battle line with their intent to label GMOS, admit “that the new GMO labels won’t lead to any price increases for consumers.” (1)

If you wish to thank these companies for their change of heart, and urge others to follow suit, sign the petition (see reference 2, below, for link. (more…)

Approval of GMO-farmed Atlantic Salmon revoked by FDA

Thursday, February 4th, 2016


By Catherine Haug, February 4, 2016 (Image, right, from Organic Consumers Association, OCA, used with permission)

Hot off the presses, wonderful news from Oregon GMO Right to Know:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is BANNING the sale and import of genetically modified salmon…until the FDA can set strict guidelines on how to label them. This wonderful news is thanks to all the activists who wrote letters and signed petitions to the FDA, demanding Congress prevent the GMO salmon from appearing on our grocery store shelves unlabeled.

Now we all wait for the lawsuit filed against the Vermont mandatory GMO labeling law to be resolved in favor of the law, so that it can take effect on July 1, 2016. In December, 2015, we successfully fought an attempt by Congress to add an anti-labeling rider to the federal spending bill. For more on this battle, see: (more…)

Negative impacts of farmed salmon (including GMO salmon)

Sunday, January 17th, 2016
Farmed Salmon Pen; Photo by L. Renehan/Living Oceans Society

Farmed Salmon Pen

by Catherine Haug, Jan 12, 2015 (image, right, from (1), originally by L. Renehan/Living Oceans Society)

According to Farmed And Dangerous (1), there are many negative impacts from the salmon farming industry, including environmental, human health, economic and food fishery impacts (see below for details.). One they don’t list (because the full impact is not yet known) is the newly approved GMO/GE farmed Atlantic salmon. These GE salmon  are genetically manipulated to grow faster than native Atlantic salmon by adding genes from an eel to that of the salmon (these two species would not mate naturally). See my earlier post GE Salmon given green light by the FDA for more.

Even if you eat only wild-caught salmon from native fisheries, you are not free of the risks of farmed salmon, because farmed salmon can and do escape their pens into the environment. They can pass on disease and other problems to wild salmon. (more…)

A win in the GMO battle: Campbell’s will voluntarily label GMOs

Thursday, January 14th, 2016

GMO-Label clearby Catherine Haug Jan 14, 2015 (Image, right Image by C. Haug based on similar image from Oregon Right To Know)

Campbells (the soup company) has just announced that it will label ALL its products that contain GMO ingredients using plain English on the packaging – not QR codes – in compliance with, and addition to, Vermont’s GMO labeling law. It is the first processed food company to break ranks with the biotech and food industries on the issue of mandatory labeling of GMOs. They will roll out their new labels over the next 12 – 18 months.

See their announcement: Why we support mandatory national GMO labeling (1) for more details.

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) reports the following discussions on this announcement(2):  (more…)