Imported Foods Alert: Hidden GMOs
By NoName Atttorney
If you want to buy non-GMO food products in the US all you have to do is be careful which basic foods–whole, processed or ingredient form–you buy. The GMO crops in U.S. agriculture are: soybeans, corn, canola (or rapeseed), sugar beets (sugar), cotton (cottonseed oil), Hawaiian papaya, zucchini and yellow crooknecked squash. But what about imported foods? What do you do about them?
Processed food manufacturers just list the ingredients. It is not the industry practice to tell you what the country of origin is for each individual ingredient. The FDA does not require this disclosure. Moreover, too many processors will say “packed in the U.S.” This is not the same as “grown in the U.S.” If that processed food has additives or preservatives, i.e., maltodextrin, even if the individual fruits, vegetables, grains, etc. came from the US that does not mean the additive, a creation, was “grown” in the US.
The percentage of our food supply that is imported is increasing. Some food sources are more likely to be imported than others as this graph from the FDA illustrates with the latest data.
Since 20% of our food is imported, one needs to know which countries grow GMO foods and the type of GMOs grown. The top 6 countries that grow GM crops are the U.S., Brazil, Argentina, India, Canada and China They account for approximately 92% of the GM world crops. Common GMO crops grown among the top 6 countries are cotton, corn, soybean, sugar beets, papaya and canola. China is unique in growing GMO tomatoes and sweet peppers (as well as Poplar trees).
It is important to know which country your vegetables were grown as well as which nations are growing GMO crops. Without knowing the country of origin and whether that nation allows GMO crops, and if so, which ones, all our efforts to avoid GMO foods are substantially undercut.
When in doubt as to the country origin of food, only buy organic or non-GMO labeled foods.