Bio-tech crops in babyfood, survey warns, Major brands admit to using modified products, activists saygreenspun.com : LUSENET : Current News - Homefront Preparations : One Thread
Oct. 29, 2002. 04:34 PM
A new survey of baby-food makers has found some of the biggest brand names contain genetically engineered ingredients that may be harmful to children, say Greenpeace and INFACT Canada.
The groups, which commissioned the survey to show that buyers of formula and other baby foods don't always know what they're getting, want companies to remove genetically modified substances from their products or at least include them in labelling.
"There should be zero tolerance for (genetically engineered) ingredients in baby food," Greenpeace Canada's Holly Penfound said Tuesday before the release of the survey.
Greenpeace and INFACT Canada, a mother and infant consumer rights group, asked various makers of formula, cereals, biscuits and other baby-food products to confirm whether they use genetically modified corn, soybeans and other ingredients.
Those who commonly use such ingredients include Loblaws, Nestle, Mead Johnson, Kraft and Ross Products. Other companies, such as Earth's Best, Milupa, Healthy Times and Tiny Bites, said they've removed genetically modified ingredients from baby-food products.
The growing biotech industry says genetically manipulating crops such as corn, soybeans, tomatoes and potatoes result in higher yields.
Health Canada doesn't require that manufacturers label foods using such ingredients, although the food industry is involved in voluntary labelling. The federal agency also says the safety assessment of biotechnology-driven foods is rigorous.
"Our primary concern is to ensure the foods every Canadians eat are safe," Health Canada spokeswoman Margot Geduld said from Ottawa.
"These types of foods certainly undergo a thorough assessment before they are sold in Canada, and this includes ensuring they're safe for all segments of the population including children."
However, Greenpeace and INFACT Canada say various research suggests genetically engineered foods come with certain risks, including creating new toxins and allergens, and changing nutrition levels that can especially be harmful to young children.
-- Anonymous, October 29, 2002