Ben & Jerry’s is making headlines after announcing that the company is removing Genetically-modified organisms from their ice cream.
The brand had been operating with 80% of their ingredients sourced as non-GMO but the company aims to completely phase out genetically modified products from its ice cream from the end of the year. Stating on their website, the undertaking will be “complex” as a single flavor can contain up to 40 ingredients and the pressure to obtain affordable ingredients and ones that can meet demand will be a challenge.
Genetically modified foods, which are engineered to resist insecticides and herbicides, have been a source of controversy in the U.S. and abroad. Supporters say the plants boost crop yields, increasing the global food supply, while critics argue the chemicals can be harmful to the environment and cause serious health problems.
By Ben & Jerry’s speaking out about their use of GMOs, it raises the questions about just what foods contain genetically-modified organisms that we would not suspect.
When California residents had the option to vote for Proposition 37, a ballot initiative that would have required genetically-modified foods to be labeled as such, Ben & Jerry’s parent company, Unilever donated almost a half a million to defeat the measure with companies such as Monsanto and The Hershey Co. giving a combined $44 million to defeat the ballot initiative.
The most common items consumers link to containing GMOs are fruits and vegetables, with many opting to pay more for organic produce than regular. By Ben & Jerry’s showing that GMO’s can extend to everything from ice cream to candy bars, it goes to show that it’s important to buy organic as often as possible to protect ours and our family’s health.
As the Vermont ice cream chain makes the change over to non-GMO ice cream, it will be interesting to observe if other popular ice cream brands follow suit.