The Natural Products Association has announced its support for labeling of foods containing genetically modified ingredients, the group stated in a press release yesterday.
With nearly 2,000 members accounting for more than 10,000 retail, wholesale, distribution and manufacturing locations in the U.S., the NPA is the nation's largest association representing natural food products.
“This is really very simple – people have a right to know what’s in their food. A national standard is the best, most cost-effective and least-confusing way to deliver on this commitment for American consumers. To have hundreds of different state and local requirements would be counterproductive and expensive. As the nation’s largest association of the natural products industry, NPA is ready to play a leadership role in this effort,” said NPA Executive Director and CEO John Shaw.
According to the NPA, polls show Americans "overwhelmingly support GMO labeling," with ABCNews.com reporting that a survey found 93 percent of Americans think there should be federal regulations requiring the labeling of any foods containing GMO ingredients. More than 60 countries currently have regulations on genetically modified foods including mandatory labels. Some even have outright bans of GMO ingredients because of concerns over human health and environmental safety. The U.S. has no GMO regulations in place and more genetically engineered food in circulation than any other country in the world.
Among the principles adopted by the NPA board:
- NPA believes consumers have the right to be informed whether genetically modified components are in their foods.
- NPA supports and encourages the voluntary labeling on non-GMO foods.
- NPA believes that consideration of federal law promoting a uniform standard is warranted to avoid separate standards for GMO labeling at the state level.
- NPA opposes a private enforcement provision, which encourages abusive litigation, to impose compliance.
- NPA supports the FDA consistently reviewing the concept of bio-equivalency of genetically modified ingredients in light of the most recent scientific studies.
The announcement from the NPA comes less than two weeks after Whole Foods Market--the nation's largest supermarket chain focused natural and organic products--announced that it would require labeling on all GMO products sold in its stores by 2018.
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