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At Viridian Nutrition, we say No to GMO

Wednesday March 14, 2012

Viridian Nutrition is a GMO-free supplement company. In fact, we do better than that, we are non-GM...

 

This article documents Viridian’s position on the thorny issue of genetic modification and ingredients within the food supplements industry.
 
Viridian Nutrition is disappointed by the introduction of GM technology into the food chain and everyday food products without satisfactory safety data or consultation with the public. As a company we firmly believe that the protection of public safety is paramount and that the freedom to choose non-GM products should be available.
 
IMPORTANT DEFINITION

However, we have to be totally sure of what we are saying when we apply the term GM-FREE or NON-GM to a product. In our opinion this means:

GM-FREE – Finished product has no detectable traces of genetically modified proteins.

NON-GM - Made exclusively from ingredients grown entirely without genetic modification.

These are very different statements. We have spoken to a major GM testing laboratory and they say they are unable to test for GM material unless they know specifically what they are looking for, ie: which genes have been added or tampered with. This can be at best difficult, and at worst impossible to ascertain. This makes the lesser GM-FREE statement very weak.
 
In the past, there was also, we believe, a number of processes involved in the production of certain vitamins, amino acids, herbs and probiotics that would make them impossible to label NON-GM. We also need to understand that this technology had been around in excess of 15-20 years and features in many food products and ingredients. The GM industry is also developing more and more nutrients (and foods) using GM methods and processes.
 

We have been emphatic with our suppliers in our sincere wish for our industry to be able to label food supplements as genuinely NON-GM with a clear conscience.
The GM-FREE claims, we feel would simply be marketing-speak in many cases and impossible to verify in all.


CROPS FIRST

More to the point, in our opinion the GM issue is about crops first and finished products second. The GM-FREE definition does not serve to reduce or eliminate the planting of GM crops. It is a poor standard to set for our industry. Allowing the GM-FREE term to cover ‘untraceable amounts’ does not properly address the issue. It would be like allowing the term ‘organic’ to cover products that have no traceable amounts of pesticides! A highly processed margarine made from a mix of GM and Non-GM crops could feasibly be labelled GM-FREE providing the processing left the finished product with untraceable amounts of GM proteins. This is outrageously misleading to the public.
 
We believe consumers are looking for NON-GM guarantees, not GM-FREE. But understandably many do not comprehend the difference. Consumers are predominantly concerned about what happens in the fields, the long-term impact on the environment and biodiversity.
 
Companies are now cynically claiming GM-FREE as they claim there are no traceable amounts of genetically modified proteins found within the finished product.
 
The solution we believe will only be found when companies stop fudging the issue and hiding behind GM-FREE instead of getting to the root of the problem and obtaining NON-GM certification from suppliers. Large suppliers will not take steps to force segregation of crops until the food and food supplement sectors work together to insist upon it.
 
Viridian is just one small company standing up to the bigger companies and our insistence on NON-GM has potentially slowed our growth, as we insist on clear standards. This issue is not served by supplement companies claiming GM-FREE when they know that this doesn’t mean NON-GM. We hope you will respect our honesty on this important and complex question and if you have further information that we are unaware of, we would be very pleased to receive it.
 
100% GUARANTEE

For your peace of mind, you can be certain that the Viridian Nutrition range is 100% NON-GM.

Additionally, Viridian has a strong commitment to minimising the company’s impact on the environment. We want our company to truly bring health and wellbeing to everyone it touches and that includes the planet.

 

Realistically, no business can claim to be fully environment friendly, as all businesses have some sort of impact on the environment. Viridian aims to minimise that impact and, additionally, gives funds to environmental, children’s and other charities to promote health and wellness. We actively source organic ingredients where available and choose to include almost exclusively vegan nutrients within our range.

 

CHARITY DONATION

This policy is in sympathy with Viridian’s commitment to charity donation. Viridian cares for you and for others at the same time. Every Viridian bottle sold generates funds for a selection of environmental, children’s and other charities.
So not only do you care for your health and your family’s health, you also help make a difference in your global community.

 

Viridian is constantly reviewing its policy and paper trail on genetic modification, and is striving to further reduce the company’s impact on the environment.

 

Viridian was first named as Best Buy in the Ethical Consumer magazine review of vitamins in April/May 2000. Since then the company has been awarded Ethical Accreditation by the Good Shopping Guide multiple times.


For more information about GM technology, contact Friends of the Earth. FOE is one of the longest-standing beneficiaries of the Viridian Nutrition Charity Donation programme.

 
 
 
 
 

 

TAGS: Politics and HealthEarth Day, GMO

 

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