Supermarkets urged to label products that aren't GM

12th November 2010 - Fine Cut

Britain's supermarkets are being urged to follow in the footsteps of their French counterparts, by labelling products that isn't genetically modified.

As reported by the Daily Mail, retailers are being told to come clear about the fact that at least 70 per cent of the meat and milk they sell comes from animals reared on feed which is genetically modified. Green campaigners are demanding that such food should have clear labels on them, to give shoppers the choice of avoiding GM.

The move comes after French supermarket giant Carrefour launched a new system in which such products are marked with a new logo. The firm, which is the world's second biggest chain, now labels foods which have derived from animals that are fed a non-GM diet with a green logo. The logo can be found on around 300 products including pork, poultry, eggs and farmed fish and will soon be extended to milk and other dairy products.

Carrefour took the decision after conducting research which found 96 per cent of consumers were in favour of honest labelling. 63 per cent of respondents indicated that they would stop eating products from animals reared on GM feed.

Peter Melchett, the policy director of the Soil Association, said he has written to the chief executives of British supermarkets Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda, Morrisons, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer in an effort to encourage them to follow Carrefour's lead. Many of these chains ban GM ingredients from their own-label foods, but not from feed which is given to their livestock.

"There has been a complete lack of openness through the failure of multiple retailers and the brands they sell to label non-organic meat and dairy products as coming from livestock fed on GM feed. This misleads consumers into thinking no GM crops are involved in the food chain in the UK," Lord Melchett said.

Whilst there is no evidence products containing GM animal feed are harmful to human health, critics claim there is a lack of research in this area.

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