Campbell Soup Stirs the Big Food Pot: Announces GMO Labeling
Campbell Soup Company is beginning the year with a bang, announcing this morning that it will begin disclosing the presence of genetically-engineered ingredients in all of its products.
Not just soup, folks. In addition to being the world's largest soup maker, The Campbell Soup Company also includes brands like Pepperidge Farm, Plum Organics, Prego, and V8 under its umbrella, making it the first major food company to offer disclosure.
Last July, the company announced their plan to increase the amount of organic offerings, and that it would removed all artificial colors, flavors, MSG, and preservatives from soup marketed towards kids.
"We've always believed consumers have a right to know what's in their food," says Denise Morrison, chief executive of Campbell. "We know that 92 percent of Americans support GMO labeling, and transparency is a critical part of our purpose."
This is worthy of a huge applause as now, more than ever, consumers want to know the truth about how producers in the food industry create the products they sell. It's the same reason we've started calculating (by hand!) the amount of added sugars in our recipes, a number that was finally given a recommendation of no more than 10% of daily calories in the 2015 Dietary Guidelines, released yesterday.
But my biggest nod to the Soup Company (nod, high-five, fist pump, Gatorade bucket over the CEO's head) is for the creation of this website. It's amazing! It gives full details about all of the ingredients in their products, why they make the choices they do, and any plans they may have to change ingredients. Ever wonder why they use MSG in their chicken noodle soup? To enhance the savory flavor. How is the MSG made? From beet molasses. Does that make it a GMO? Yes.
Folks, this is what you've been asking for. Don't get upset about what you read–be appreciative of the fact that it's there.
How can you currently tell where GMOs hide? By law, anything labeled as organic cannot contain any genetically-modified ingredients. There are also a number of products marked with the Non-GMO stamp, verified by the Non-GMO Project, a nonprofit organization that provides labeling for non-GMO foods and products.
Campbell Soup Company is also pushing for a federally mandated labeling system for non-GMO claims made on food packaging. This change in labeling is expected to take the soup company 12 to 18 months.
As the battle of the big foods continues, we look forward to seeing who will be next to pull back the curtain.