Companies start enrolling products in non-GMO verification

The Non-GMO Project finalized its working standard for verifying natural and organic food products as non-GMO and has begun enrolling products in the verification process. Companies that have products enrolled in the non-GMO verification process include Whole Foods Market, which enrolled its “365” and other private label products; Blue Marble Brands, which includes Mediterranean Organic, Moosewood, Old Wessex, Ltd., Organic Baby, and Organic Classics; Eden Foods, Lundberg Family Farms, Nature’s Path Foods, R.W. Garcia, and WholeSoy & Co. A total of 291 products are enrolled in the Project’s Product Verification Program (PVP) so far with more expected to follow.

Verified products will be identified with a “Non-GMO Project Verified” seal that will start appearing on products in fall 2009.

R.W. Garcia was the first company to undergo an on-site inspection through the Non-GMO Project. The company’s tortilla chips are going through the verification process.

“We are aware that organic does not mean ‘non-GMO’,” said Allan Perkins, a member of R.W. Garcia’s quality assurance team. “Genetic modification is a prohibited practice in organics, but it isn’t a prohibited substance. There are currently no requirements for ridding organic foods of GMOs in organic certification.”

The core components of the PVP are traceability, segregation, and GMO testing at critical points.

Perkins says suppliers have been very cooperative in responding to R.W. Garcia’s requests for non-GMO ingredients, and he hopes that other companies will participate in the project.

“We’re happy to be a pioneer in the Non-GMO Project and are hopeful that our stand against GMOs will inspire other snack food companies to join the fight.”

© Copyright The Organic & Non-GMO Report November 2008