By Dr. Mercola
We’re in really exciting times with regards to shifting the tide against genetically engineered (GE) foods and genetically modified organisms (GMOs).As you know, I was a big supporter of the California GMO labeling campaign, and while we lost the vote by an incredibly narrow margin last November, Proposition 37 catalyzed an enormous amount of awareness across the US.More people are now aware of GMO’s than we could possibly have ever reached through educational efforts alone, investing the same amount of money that we invested in Prop. 37. It really marked the beginning of the end for GM foods in the US.Jeffrey Smith, who is one of the leaders in educating people about the concerns and dangers of GMOs, has been at it for about 17 years. He believes we are now at the most critical stage in the history of GMO activism in the United States.“We’ve now hit new stages of what I call the tipping point of consumer rejection,” he says. “And it follows very logically from Prop 37. Let me explain what I mean by a tipping point, and then I’ll explain exactly where we are in that process.In January 1999, the biotech industry boldly predicted that within five years 95 percent of all commercial seeds in the world would be genetically modified and patented.They did not anticipate the gag order of a scientist being lifted three weeks later in Europe. A firestorm of media reported on his results of a GMO-feeding study. Over 700 articles were written within a single month in the UK.In 10 weeks, the tipping point of consumer rejection was achieved in Europe – heralded not by the European Commission banning GMOs, but by Unilever banning GMOs, then Nestlé, and then virtually everyone in Europe because they realized that using GM ingredients had become a marketing liability. This is what we call a tipping point.”
US Now Reaching the Tipping Point
In the US, we saw a tipping point against Monsanto’s genetically engineered bovine growth hormone (rBGH) when it got kicked out of Walmart, Starbucks, Yoplait, and Dannon.This was not due to any action taken by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), but occurred when mothers across the nation became aware of the cancer risks associated with milk from cows treated with bovine growth hormone.Now, the tipping point of consumer rejection of genetically engineered foods in the US is almost here.A clear sign of this occurred last year, when the president of Whole Foods confessed that when a product becomes verified as Non-GMO or GMO-free, sales leap by 15-30 percent. Of all the categories of health and wellness claims, such as “gluten-free,” etc, “GMO-free” products have the most rapid growth in sales.“This shows an enormous desire and demand for non-GMO products,”Smith says. “There are now 10,000 products in our NonGMOShoppingGuide.com database that are verified as non-GMO, and that’s expanding every day.”“It’s actually happening in a big way. The next stage of the tipping point was heralded by a New York Times article1 on the 27th of May. If you were to read it from the perspective of a food product manager, you would realize the absolute need to make a decision.I call it the stage of “awake and scramble,” where they wake to the fact that the GMO movement is in place. It’s not going away. And if they want to participate, they got to scramble for non-GMO ingredients now because they may not be able to get it later.”
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