‘Animal-Free’ GMO Dairy Threatens Non-GMO Organic Producers
BELLINGHAM, Wash., May 25, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — During Dairy Month in June, the Non-GMO Project joins U.S. dairy farmers in speaking out against synthetic dairy products, which are quietly appearing in grocery store coolers everywhere. North America.
How do you treat a germ? Non-GMO project, farmers worry about synbio dairy
In recent years, “animal-free” dairy protein has found its way into everything from ice cream to cream cheese to snack bars, but many buyers, food manufacturers and retailers are unaware that it is are in fact unlabelled and unregulated GMOs.
“Synbio dairy products are GMOs because they are created by genetically engineering a microbe like yeast to excrete milk proteins,” said Megan WestgateFounder and Executive Director of the Non-GMO Project, North America the most relied upon non-GMO authority. “That’s the definition of abnormal.”
The synbio process forces cells to produce new proteins that mimic natural ingredients like casein and whey. Possible risks include:
Significant biohazardous waste.
The accidental release of new GMOs into the environment.
Continued reliance on fossil fuels for GMO growth media and waste incineration.
Synbio dairy could also put traditional dairy farmers and farmers out of business.
The synbio dairy industry is developing rapidly with a significant injection of investment. According to the biotech industry’s Good Food Institute, nearly $2 billion has been invested in the development of “precision fermented” products like synbio dairy products in the last year alone.
“GMOs pose a threat to the land, the environment, and family farms, and I don’t think GMOs have a place in our agricultural and food system,” says Albert Straus, Founder/CEO of Straus Family Creamery. “As the first non-GMO project verified creamery in North Americawe are committed to organic farming.”
Straus adds, “Organic farming practices protect the environment, care for animal welfare, build soil health, and provide nutritious food while revitalizing rural communities. Organic dairy farming and milk production is the basis of a carbon-neutral dairy farming model that we will achieve on my farm by 2023.”
The Non-GMO Project is launching a first-ever dairy-focused campaign during National Dairy Month to raise awareness of the agricultural and environmental threat of synbio dairy products. An industry webinar, consumer education and media kit for brands and retailers will support the June campaign, “How Do You Milk a Microbe?” The campaign claims that natural, organic and non-GMO dairy products are better than synbio dairy products for consumers, farmers and the planet. Studies show that natural and traditional dairy products, produced regeneratively, can absorb carbon from the soil while enhancing biodiversity and healthy soils.
The makers of synbio dairy products also claim to be climate friendly, but the evidence is thin. “Given that their patents refer to the need for large quantities of raw materials, it is clear that the industry is only increasing the demand for more GMO seeds and cheap GMO crops. This reinforces the loss of biodiversity by monocultures and pesticides, while reducing the vitality of our rural communities by concentrating wealth in corporations,” warns Alan Lewis, Vice President at Natural Grocers. “Reliance on petrochemical fertilizers and tillage releases huge amounts of carbon into the atmosphere. The same cows that synthetic biology wants to replace with ‘sustainable’ fermentation tanks are actually key to recovering carbon via healthy pastures.”
On June 16 at 10 a.m. PSTthe project will host an industry webinar [register here]including Megan Westgate, Albert Straus, Alan Lewis and Errol Schweizer, author, journalist and former National Grocery Program Manager at Whole Foods Market. Panelists will share insider information on synbio dairy products and answer questions regarding misleading claims on synbio dairy products.
The Non-GMO Project is a non-profit organization committed to preserving and creating sources of non-GMO products, educating consumers, and providing verified non-GMO choices. As a market leader in avoiding GMOs, the project offers North America the most rigorous and reliable third-party verification for non-GMO foods and products.
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