A new initiative seeks to develop a certification standard that retailers and consumers can use to identify products free of genetically modified organisms.
The Non-GMO Project is asking every natural retailer in the United States and Canada to join its organization and to encourage food and supplements manufacturers to participate in developing and enforcing a GMO-free standard.
Founded by two retailers, The Natural Grocery Co. in Berkeley, Calif., and The Big Carrot Natural Food Market in Toronto, it is a project of The Coordinating Council in Seattle. Genetic ID of Fairfield, Iowa, will develop the standards program.
Standards in the United States and Canada assure that organic products are not grown from modified seeds, but contamination of crops remains a concern, said Corey Nicholl, U.S. coordinator of the project.
Yearly membership fees are $25 to $500. Retailers are also asked to list their stores' vendors, distributors and direct line companies, so that the project can request their participation. In exchange, retailers will receive display materials and access to the database of companies and certified products.
For more information, visit www.nongmoproject.org.
Natural Foods Merchandiser volume XXVII/number 3/p. 20