Small Changes Create Big Change
The Non-GMO Project was started by a small group of retailers in 2007. Since the first Non-GMO Project Verified seal appeared in grocery stores in 2010, the Butterfly has grown to become the market’s trusted standard for GMO avoidance. This growth is based on the decisions you are making every time you shop. What may feel like a small choice in the grocery store is driving true and meaningful change in the way our food is made. When it comes to big change, it’s the small steps that make the difference. Take Vermont, a small state making very big ripples in terms of transparency. Their mandatory labeling of GMOs takes effect July 1st and will help trigger similar laws in neighboring Maine and Connecticut.
Each time you talk to friends, family and neighbors about your GMO concerns, you are spreading positive awareness. Each time you shop and reach for the Butterfly, you are making a change in the supply chain. Each time you want to know more about GMOs and your food, you are part of an engaged community – like Mitsuki and Angelina pictured above, who gave a presentation to their elementary school and raised $70 for the Non-GMO Project. This month’s Changemaker nominees are these two young ladies, who worked hard to bring the GMO issue to their fellow students. Be sure to take a moment and cast your vote for Mitsuki and Angelina. Amazing job, girls!
Mission to Mars
There is so much conversation going on around GMOs these days, it can be hard to keep up. From the defeat of the latest version of the DARK Act to announcements from Campbell’s, General Mills and most recently, Kellogg’s, Mars and ConAgra to label products containing GMOs nationwide, our voices demanding transparency are being heard. Consumer awareness has risen to such a point that companies now must decide on which side of the debate they want to be.
Make no mistake about it, this sea change is all because of you. While these strides toward transparency are a reason to celebrate, the long-term goal of the Project is a world devoid of GMOs. Large food companies admitting their GMO content is a good news/bad news situation. Good news that more people will know what’s in the products they are purchasing. Bad news that it’s GMOs.
Many of these large parent companies have purchased or started brands that follow shopper trends. Many companies decide to commit to going non-GMO because of their customers. Kellogg’s owns Kashi. Kashi has Non-GMO Project Verified products. ConAgra Foods owns Alexia. Alexia has Non-GMO Project Verified products. General Mills owns Annie’s. Annie’s has Non-GMO Project Verified products. Consumer demand for Non-GMO Project Verified products continues to grow exponentially; driving more and more conventional brands and grocers to align with the Butterfly. This is a good thing. When one considers the buying power of a big brand and the reach of a national grocer have in helping the Project to educate shoppers on the risks of GMOs, we all win.
The mission of the Non-GMO Project is to build and protect a non-GMO future; and we are deeply encouraged by the fact that shoppers will have more insight into the products they are purchasing. The power of your choices each time you shop is driving the non-GMO movement forward.
While legacy brands are announcing the presence of GMOs in their products, at the other end of the spectrum are companies making self-claims that their products are non-GMO. Companies can purchase stock photo image files to add unsubstantiated non-GMO messaging to their packaging! Whereas the companies that are compliant with the Non-GMO Project Standard must go through rigorous evaluation and ongoing testing of all major risk ingredients. Non-GMO Project Verified is the most trusted seal for GMO avoidance and we are grateful for the confidence you have placed in the Butterfly.
When you are discussing GMOs with your friends and neighbors, here are the top 3 talking points that most folks can relate to:
- We have the right to know what’s in the food we’re eating and feeding our families — we deserve an informed choice.
- Genetically modified foods have not been adequately tested; it’s unethical to put an experimental technology into the food we feed our loved ones.
- More than 60 countries require labels on GMO products, and many of these also have severe restrictions or bans against GMO food production or sales — the U.S. and Canada do not. We deserve the same level of protection and information as citizens in other nations around the world.
The Non-GMO Project is a non-profit whose mission is to educate everyone — from farmers to manufacturers to brands to retailers to you — of the risks that GMOs present to the planet and its people. We do one thing and we have continued to do one thing since the Non-GMO Project Verified seal first appeared on shelves in 2010. Like Mitsuki and Angelina, we believe the more people know about the unknowns of GMOs, the more they will want to know about the products they are purchasing. We are proud of the progress we are making together and will continue to celebrate each time the Butterfly appears on a product — it means transparency, testing and awareness are growing.
From all of us at the Non-GMO Project, thank YOU for all that you do.
Changemakers Change Acres
This blog is part of our monthly “Changemakers Change Acres” series which celebrates the progress we are all making together towards a collective non-GMO future. Tell us about a brand, retailer or community member who is pushing the movement forward in a notable way. We will honor these leaders at the end of 2016. Submit your nomination anytime through October 31, 2016.