Crop Biotech Update

General Mills' Cheerios Reinforce Safety of Biotech Crops

January 15, 2014

General Mill's Cheerios announced that the cereal is "not made with genetically modified ingredients" on the boxes of their product. According to Tom Forsythe, Vice President of Global Communications for General Mills, they did not actually change the ingredients of the cereal. They just placed that label on the boxes to please the consumers. The company also disclosed that they are not against biotech products. In fact, they have released articles in their websites informing the public that biotech food is safe, citing reputable institutions such as UN World Health Organization (WHO) and UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) that have approved biotech crops to be as safe and acceptable as their conventional counterparts. They also provided links to other websites which provide more information about biotech crops.

Cathy Enright, Executive Director of the Council for Biotechnology Information, said food companies have the right to select the ingredients favorable for their market, just as farmers have the freedom to choose which seeds are right for their businesses. Thus, General Mill's new label is a good example of how food companies can voluntarily and truthfully label products and provide choices for their customers.

Read General Mill's statements at http://blog.generalmills.com/2014/01/the-one-and-only-cheerios, http://www.generalmills.com/Home/ChannelG/on_biotechnology.aspx, and http://cheerios.com/en/Articles/cheerios-and-gmos. Experts' responses to the statement are available at http://gmoanswers.com/experts-respond-general-mills%E2%80%99-cheerios-announcement.