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OMG, Let’s Stop Eating GMOs

LROPbanner According to the FDA, as much as 75 percent of processed food in the United States may contain components from genetically modified crops. In 30 other countries around the world, including Australia, Japan and all of the nations in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production of GMOs (genetically modified organisms), due to environmental impact and concerns about GMO safety. At Whole Foods Market we support the National Organic Standards, which prohibit GMOs in organics, and we champion informed consumer choice with regard to GMOs. Since 1992—before the commercialization of GMO foods in the United States—we’ve been informing our customers about the issues and advocating labeling of genetically modified foods. We are proud to be a founding leader of The Non-GMO Project, working to ensure the sustained availability of non-GMO choices through an industry-wide standard, which will allow verification that products are non-GMO. Our 365 Everyday Value® and Whole Foods Market™ brand products are sourced to avoid ingredients grown from genetically engineered seed, and our partnership with the Non-GMO Project will enable us to verify and label these products. Your options for choosing non-GMO are growing! Remember: Every bite has a story. Your conscious food choices make a world of difference. Learn more at Let’s Retake Our Plates.

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45 comments

Comments

Tony says …

Vote with your dollars folks! Buy organic and non-GMO!

Scott Smith says …

It would certainly be a lot easier to NOT eat GMO foods if there was a labeling standard to identify which foods are the spawn of scientific genetic rape vs. naturally produced plants.

rjstrategies says …

This is exactly why I feel that I can trust Wholefoods!

Sandra Nicholas says …

I am pleased that your company's dedication of promoting organic foods in the US. My concern is the troubling question. Can you really prevent GMO from infiltrate the US crop. The pesticide used around the country would adversely affect farmers and how can you tell if your foods are not affected by these organism? I am not a biologist, but seeds trvl and pollen in the air. Are your products a 100% organic? Please advise

Fair Trade says …

I don't think it's exaggerating to say that if you only do one thing to ensure future generations inherit a planet as bountiful as the one we have - that one thing is to avoid buying GMO. There's not much evidence to prove that GMO isn't good for you because the GMO producers spent a lot of money to ensure there isn't; for those interested in reading more on this topic - http://www.actionbioscience.org/biotech/pusztai.html

YF says …

I support no GMO, but how do we know which is GMO and which is not? Sometime I even wonder, are the products with USDA Organic sticker really are organic products. But I can't find a way to check it, so have to trust it. I would like to see a response from WF about colleen whalen's comment.

says …

YF - Products that are certified organic by the USDA cannot be derived from GMO crops.

EllBee says …

OMG, clever title!

Traci says …

Unless GMO foods are required to be labeled as such the public has no way of knowing what they are buying. One only needs to check the size of the companies involved in producing GMO foods to know that it's clearly a "To big to fail" deal.

Brenda Brochetti says …

Thank you for supplying such a nice variety of non-GMO foods. Not only are they healthier but taste better. I thought I was loosing my sense of taste somewhat. Foods had lost flavor until I went to non-GMO.

colleen whalen says …

Whole Foods 365 Brand of Omega 3 Fish Oil states on the label it has SOY - but the label does not state if it is certified organic soy. I contacted the WF corporate office and got the "run around". Corporate WF told me it is "soy lecithin" but would not give any information other than that. Conventionally grown soy and soy lecithin is GMO. The lack of transparency, the evasive language in the emails Corporate WF office sent me - makes me think they have something to hide? What makes this even worse is that you do not even NEED soy lecithin in the packaging of Omega 3 Fish Oil tablets. If it is nitrogen flushed it will be fine. BTW - Omega 3 Fish Oil loses it's potency at ROOM TEMPERATURE and every single natural food store I've ever shopped at insists on keeping it on the shelf at room temperature. It needs to be kept REFRIGERATED. This is the reason why there are lots of people with clinical depression issues who try Omega 3 Fish Oil and state "it doesn't work" - it is because the store they bought it at kept it at ROOM TEMPERATURE and did not bother to refrigerate it. Why won't Whole Foods take a leadership stance and start REFRIGERATING Omega 3 Fish Oil? ALSO - I don't want "greenwashing" obsfucation from WF Corporate Office about if the soy lecithin put in their 365 Brand of Omega 3 Fish Oil is GMO genetically engineered conventionally grown soy. If it is not certified organic, it is GMO soy. 100% of conventionally grown corn, canola, soy, rice, wheat and many other crops grown in America are GMO. I am tired of the glib and superficial treatment WF is giving the GMO issue. Is it merely a public relations campaign to boost sales - or will WF really DO something about being clearer and less evasive about their WF 365 Brand Omega 3 Fish Oil? I did a Google Search on this topic and discoverd a San Francisco Law Firm is currently suing WF in a class action lawsuit for false labelling on their 365 Brand. I am FED UP with "greenwashing". I have been eating a 100% organic plant based diet for 40 years and I am tired of being treated like a patsy and a sap by what allegedly passes for the so-called organic/natural foods industry.

Margie Blake says …

I want labels to be clear with the GMO issue. I dont want to eat GMO products. I dont even want them in my cosmetics.

Karin says …

You don't actually say that Whole Foods does not carry products that have GMOs, which leads me to believe that WF DOES carry products that have GMOs. So, do you?

says …

Unfortunately, GMOs are so common in our food system that they can be very difficult to avoid. As a consumer, you can best avoid GMOs by shopping for products that are certified organic and by looking for labeling that indicates the product has been certified non-GMO by a credible third party organization, such as the Non-GMO Project.

2hipchick says …

Thanks WF for watching out for us...very informative article...keep them coming...love your stores...and your employees are the most helpful, cheerful people.

Margaret Darby says …

I am in favor of restricting the use/distribution of Genetically Modified foods due to the fact that I consider them contaminated - they've been artificially tampered with and I am completely opposed to eatting foods grown or produced in such a manner.

nicole says …

"U.S. to Prevent GMO Labeling Worldwide" Can you believe it? Please read up and take action. I don't know about you, but I want to know what's in my food.

Suzanne says …

It hasn't been possible to this date to get across the board labeling of GMO foods because the industry fights that tooth and nail. Their reasoning? "We don't want to propogate fear in the consumers' minds about what they're eating, fear based on uneducated consumer choices." Do you get that? We're too stupid to be able to discern what we want to eat. And the politicians bend to the industry whims.

Ken K. MD,PhD says …

The most significant, real health issue is pesticide residues on conventional crops. Buying organic avoids these. However, in many cases, GMOs can be grown with lower pesticide use than conventional crops, and thus can be beneficial at lower costs than organics. To vilify GMOs based solely on the "scare factor" in the absence of any real health risk is misguided. GMOs are likely here to stay, and have real, actual benefits ecologically since toxic chemical use is reduced. Lets continue to study them, and don't eat them if you don't want to, but they are not evil, and have beneficial aspects. (BTW, I have no financial interest in GMOs).

jon says …

hello, just been reading about GMO fish about to be introduced to our food supply. I was wondering if WFM has a position on this and are taking any steps to insure the quality and safety of their seafood. There was something I read about salmon species basically being wipe out within a certain amount of generations, that all salmon would be GMO.

paig292 says …

@jon Yes, we do have a position on GMO fish: no genetically engineered (modified) or cloned fish can be sold to Whole Foods Market, period. You can learn more about our Aquaculture Standards here: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/products/aquaculture.php Thanks!

Sue Blanton, DC says …

What is Whole Foods doing about AcuAdvantage GMO salmon? It's the same ol' thing: the "manufacturer" approves it, the FDA accepts it without testing, who is identifying and labeling GMO salmon, and will we ever have a real salmon again? Does the non-GMO Project have a website where it takes comments and forwards them to our senators/reps/president/FDA, pathetic though their response is? I have personally made comments to each of these identities, but it seems to me the population that shops Whole Foods would be especially interested in commenting - likely to "get" the health threat and care about their own and others' health - and might add a considerable number of commenting bodies eventually swaying even our senators and reps to take another look at this question. Until then, the only safe response I know is to avoid all salmon and every other product known to be contaminated with GMO. Hard on honest food providers and sellers. Could we call out the naturalist troops and just get this done?

paig292 says …

@Sue Here's the info from our seafood quality standards team: Whole Foods Market is committed to organic and natural foods in their purest state. Our industry-leading farmed seafood standards, which require farm to fork traceability and require producers to provide detailed information on farming practices and pass independent third-party audits -- prohibit the sale of both genetically modified or cloned seafood and their progeny. Thanks for asking.

AS says …

What's the difference between buying GM produce from WF vs. your competition? I don't think much.

paig292 says …

@AS We never knowingly sell GMO produce. We work with our national growers to confirm that they do not use GMO or “Round Up Ready” seed. Local supply is more difficult to confirm and drift is an uncontrollable issue. Please know that while we are continually working to assess and improve our processes, choosing organic when possible remains the best way to avoid GMOs.

Lorne Salter says …

This article http://www.naturalnews.com/029833_non-GMO_foods_FDA.html describes FDA intiatives to not only approve the super fast growing Frankensalmon and not label it, but to ban the "non-GMO" labelling, which would gut (no pun intended) Whole Food's GMO program and most natural food labelling. This is yet another push to ban labelling of genetically modified food AND non-GMO. I am sure you are on to this and fighting again for all of us. We are behind you in this new battle and wish you the same success as in some of the earlier battles. I hope you tap your customers for a vigorous in-store and online petition, letter, call-congress etc. campaign to defeat them again.

Irene Gibson says …

Why is Whole Foods now supporting allowing GMO alfalfa and other GMO foods? Why are you caving in to Monsanto?

Nick McLogic says …

I am going to question the validity of some of the assertions here, or at least point out the posters' myopia. When people go on about genetic engineering and how we are affecting nature, I feel compelled to point out that some of these people drive cars. They also use the internet, may probably own a dog or cat, and probably have eaten meat from poultry and/or beef. These are all products in which we have manipulated nature to our benefit. The purpose of GMOs in agriculture is to feed more people, rely less on pesticides, use less water, and increase resistance to specific bacteria or viruses. The tools regarding our pets and food animals has been selective breeding, which is selecting breeding mates by specific traits. Where some would say this is natural, it is not. Evolution is natural, selective breeding and genetic engineering are not. I have yet to see links to any peer reviewed scientific literature that casts a bad light on less pesticides, pathogen resistance, less water use in crops OR feeding the growing population of this planet. That all being said, I eat almost entirely organic products because it's the only way to avoid persistent pesticides. Whole Foods offers great prices on these products and I value them for that. So while I use and advocate organic labelled products, this non-GMO movement smacks of under education and an inability to look at the bigger picture regarding world food supply and population.

KMC0378 says …

I'm sorry, but just because GMO increase crop sustainability, and reduces water consumption for irrigation, doesn't mean that it's actually healthy to consume. My biggest beef with it is that there hasn't been sufficient long-term testing to determine how our bodies will react to the protiens in these foods. I also do not think it is fair that we are eating all types of foods that contain GMO's and are not being told that they are in the food!!! The truth in labeling is not there. Everything else is on the labels, SOY, PEANUTS etc. if it touched those things in the production process. Every other ingredient is listed, then they should have to say "GM Soy" or "GM Corn Byproduct" or whatever. At least give us a choice instead of shoving it down our throats. I think it is rather socialistic to "assume" we'd all be ok with the decisions they have made for us!

Gary Abreim says …

Can Whole Foods make the claim that their 365 brand does not contain GMOs?

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@GARY - Thanks for your question. We have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in putting our house brand (both 365 Everyday Value and 365 organic products) through third party non-GMO verification. You can find the complete list at http://www.nongmoproject.org/take-action/search-participating-products/search/?brandId=222.

Benjamin Haffner says …

"Let's stop eating GMOs?" Whole Foods: Stop selling GMO foods, and support Prop 37

Benjamin Haffner says …

Ha! I posted a suggestion for WF to stop selling GMO foods (like Kashi cereal) - and, the screen froze. The save button worked; but, then I read this comment at the top of my monitor, "Your comment has been queued for review by site administrators and will be published after approval." Oh well, I tried to enlighten the unaware WF's customers about their consistent practice of profiting from GMO foods. I know it's a hard business transition to make, but a worth while one for the health of WF clientele and brand integrity (stop the false advertising of GMO foods as natural, especially in your deli section).

Molly Terlevich says …

So is 365 Brand Canola Oil GMO or???

Viriato77 says …

If you are informing your customers about the issues are you making the point of telling them that essentially every credible scientific institution (including the academic) have found GMO's no more dangerous than their non-GMO counterparts? Have you presented the possibility that restrictions and bans in other countries may be politically motivated and are not based on any sound science?

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@VIRIATO77 - We support and believe in the right for everyone to know what's in their food. We believe that by offering GMO labels on products, consumers can make an informed decision on what products they purchase based on their personal beliefs about GMOs.

Viriato77 says …

@Nikki That's all well and good but you haven't answered my questions. Are you presenting all the information? You say you act as consumer advocates by endorsing a GMO label but do you provide the information to teach the consumer about GMOs? Would you endorse a label that stated the following? "This product may have been made with genetically modified ingredients approved by the FDA and USDA. The World Health Organization and the National Academy of Sciences has determined that products made GM ingredients are as safe or safer than organic or other conventional foods."

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@VIRIATO77 - As I mentioned we allow our customers to make their own personal decision about GMOs. We provide information online and in-store as to how they can shop in our stores if they are looking to avoid GMOs.

Viriato77 says …

Does Whole Foods take the position that GMO's pose a health risk to their consumers?

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@VIRIATO77 - No, we allow our customers to make their own personal decisions about GMOs.

Viriato77 says …

And yet the title of this post is "OMG, Let’s Stop Eating GMOs"

viriato77 says …

It usually takes a day or less to get a response.....hmmmm

James Cooper says …

This is just scaremongering. There are thousands of papers showing that GMO crops pose no harm http://bit.ly/KnzAnI and every major scientific organization world wide has considered the science and come to the same comclusion. http://on.fb.me/1htyRi7 And yes, there have been plenty of long term studies: here is a review: http://bit.ly/HMKVwr

Justin says …

Some people really need to fact check. For ne there is no GM wheat currently on the market. There was testing on some in the 90's and testing has started up again in some places but it is not commercially avilable. The other point i have is when people claim this issue is being bought by the "Big Ag" companies. The last i checked Monsanto (the company every one likes to demonize) and Whole Foods were worth around the same amount so quit making the claim that its paying off all these people with how big its. If that's the case Whlle Foods could do he exact same thing.

Rachael Stephan says …

I would love to see an increase in non-GMO foods so I can lead a healthy life and reduce my chances of health issues in the future. I believe everyone deserves to live a healthy life, so why let our food get in the way of that!