My wife came home with a bag of Pita chips. This particular brand had “Non-GMO Certified” on both the front a back labels.
This label is pure marketing. Why?
There is only one product in the entire list of ingredients that could potentially come from a GM plant, canola oil. Of course, the process of generating the canola oil removes all DNA and proteins, resulting in a product that is indistinguishable from canola oil from a non-GMO plant. Further, the list specifically states that the pita chips could use canola OR sunflower oil (which doesn’t even come from a GMO-plant).
This particular product is non-GMO in the same way that a cranberry is non-GMO. Because no one had ever invented a GMO cranberry. The same with all the products listed… none of them have ever had GMO versions created.
Of course, the average person doesn’t know that. Most people seem to think that non-GMO is the same as organic, that is, inherently better than something that is not non-GMO or organic. At least one person I have talked to thinks that everything that is not certified organic by the FDA secretly contains GM stuff (they don’t know what that even means) and it’s, by definition, BAAADDD!!!
Here’s the entire list of GMOs allowed in the US.
- Papaya (wouldn’t exist if not for genetic modification)
- Zucchini (this one surprised me. About 13% of all zucchini is GM to protect from a virus.)
- Potatoes (one strand of potatoes has a deletion to prevent bruising and certain compounds to form during frying)
- Arctic Apples (new apple strain that doesn’t turn brown, again a gene silencing, not addition)
- Soy beans (about 94% of US soy is GM)
- Corn (90% of US corn crop is GM)
- Pineapples (imports only and not in Hawaii)
That’s it for stuff you eat directly. Other things that are grown, but not consumed directly by humans…
- Alfalfa (recently approved)
- Canola/Rapeseed (87% in the US, used for canola oil, discussed above)
- Sugar beet (9% worldwide; sugar is processed and is not GM)
- Sugarcane (negligible quantities worldwide; sugar is processed and is not GM)
- Sweet Peppers (only in China in negligible quantities)
- Tomatoes (only in China in negligible quantities)
Food stuffs in the approval pipeline
- Golden Rice (modified to produce Vitamin A)
That’s all. There’s nothing else.
Look at the ingredient list for your Non-GMO product. If it doesn’t contain any of those things, then of course it’s not GMO and you can be sure that the company is using non-GMO as a marketing tool.