Published: October 3, 2022

Category: Non-GMO News, The Non-GMO Blog

Plant-based food sales rose to $7.4 billion last year, growing three times faster than total sales. Health, climate, and affordability concerns played a role. The Non-GMO Project’s butterfly seal appeared on 52% of those sales. Non-GMO Project Verified frozen plant-based meat alternatives rose 71.7%, for example, compared to 10.4% growth for unlabeled products.

A current challenge is the proliferation of products made using synthetic biology—including non-animal dairy proteins, fats, and blood-like compounds such as “heme.” Labeled as “precision fermentation,” or “nature identical,” these foods are largely unregulated and unlabeled. As synthetic ingredients infiltrate the plant-based space, Executive Director of the Non-GMO Project Megan Westgate warns: “Let’s keep plant-based foods naturally non-GMO. And if they do contain GMOs, at least label them clearly.”

Veganism expert Alicia Kennedy referred to the “opportunistic nature” of some GMO companies. “The problem is that many consumers have no idea that some of these products are made from industrial GMOs and synthetic ingredients. Vegetarianism and veganism have been co-opted by Silicon Valley and venture capitalists, where once they were often a protest against industrial foods.”

Nicole Atchison, CEO of Puris Holdings, added, “We can make vegan options available and truly sustainable by using natural, non-GMO ingredients—that’s what most people want, too.”

In September, the Project hosted a seminar for industry leaders and thought experts to discuss the future of plant-based foods—specifically, what innovation looks like without GMOs.

Source: The Non-GMO Project

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Organic & Non-GMO Insights October 2022