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One of the food industry’s most prominent players recently announced that they will be expanding their line of non-GMO products, due to the ever-increasing customer demand for clean food. Nestle may have wowed consumers with their choice, but it may make some waves with their good friend, Monsanto.
“The company is broadening its product offerings to give consumers more options with no GMO ingredients and identifying these products with the SGS-verified ‘no GMO ingredients’ claim,” the food giant stated on Tuesday.
“Nestle USA understands that consumers are seeking choice and many prefer to select products with no GMO ingredients,” they declared.
Of course, this is not Nestle’s first move towards GMO-free products. In April, Nestle announced that they would be removing GMO ingredients from six of their top-selling ice cream products, as well. The company states it is trying to evolve along with consumer demands. It is great to see that companies are beginning to realize that consumers want options; no one wants to be forced to buy GMO products.
It is easy to want to applaud Nestle for their decision to continue to expand their line of non-GMO products. However, it is also clear that this company is doing so out of their own financial interests – not because they care about what people are eating. Organic, GMO-free foods are the newest trend, and smart manufacturers are beginning to see that they will not win anyone over by insisting that GM, pesticide-laden food products are safe. “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em,” is a philosophy Nestle has clearly taken to heart.
Nestle is not an angelic company, even if they have decided to start serving up “GMO-free” options. Just three years ago, they donated millions of dollars to prevent and oppose GMO labeling in Washington state, along with Monsanto and other biotech firms. Truth Out reports that on October 18, 2013, the Grocery Manufacturers of America disclosed that several of their largest, most powerful players silently donated large sums of money to oppose Initiative 522. This bill would have required grocery items containing GMO ingredients to be labeled as such. The group chose to voluntarily release the names of the silent donors, after Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed a lawsuit against their concealment of corporate donors.
Nestle was among the top three highest contributors, and donated a cool $1.5 million to keep GMO ingredients under wraps and off product labels. Nestle also made a large donation to oppose similar legislation in California the year before, in 2012. The bill ultimately failed, after Big Food and Big Biotech joined forces and together raised a staggering $46 million to prevent its passing. And we’re supposed to believe they care?