Business, FDA

Ben & Jerry’s VS. Monsanto: Round Two

Ben & Jerry's Activism
Ben & Jerry’s has an “Activism” tab on their website.
Image: Ben & Jerry’s

Ice cream with a conscious manufacturer Ben & Jerry’s has announced they will eliminate GMOs from the 20% of its products that contain them by next year.  Ben & Jerry’s says that everyone has a right to know what is in their food, and support labeling and transparency of genetically modified foods.

For a company that has “Activism” as a tab on their company website, this announcement is no surprise.  Concern for GMOs have been rising as more information is made available to consumers while legislation has been introduced in a handful of states across the country.  Since most genetically modified foods are engineered resist herbicides and pesticides, many people fear that GMO foods proliferate the amount of poisonous chemicals that people ingest.  Nearly all genetically modified foods come from seed developed and manufactured by the agricultural conglomerate Monsanto Company.

This is not the first time Ben & Jerry’s has led the charge against potentially dangerous foods.  In the late 1990’s the company labeled their product as using milk made without the use of synthetic hormones shortly after the Food and Drug Administration approved it for commercial use.  The hormone, called rBGH was created and manufactured by the Monsanto Company.  Ben & Jerry’s fought and won against efforts from Monsanto-funded lobbying groups to ban such labels.

The groups complained that labeling milk as hormone free would make people think that milk treated with hormones was unsafe.  The label remains today and Ben & Jerry’s stands out as a warrior for food justice.  Their support of GMO labeling proves a good sign to those who are concerned about health and the environment, as we may see transparency sooner than expected.

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