As parents or guardians who source the freshest, highest possible nutritional items, devoid of chemicals, colourings and additives, most of you will be aware there is another ‘landmine’ we now need to be wary of whilst grocery shopping – GE or GM foods.
We might at times be tempted to throw a Toblerone or Lindt chocolate bar in our trolley, a Nestle product, some small goods from the deli section, however when you look at the list of common brands below that contain GE foods you too might become more selective.
The full definition of a GMO is an organism that has been modified by gene technology, inheriting particular traits from the initial organism because of gene technology.
Currently there are only three GM crops in Australia that have been approved (for growing) to date, certain varieties of GM cotton and two varieties of GM canola. So far, insect protection and herbicide tolerance are the characteristics most commonly introduced into crops. Most of the GM foods available in Australia today come from GM crops grown and processed overseas. In June 2005, FSANZ approved twenty-five GM foods and GM food products from soybeans, canola, corn, potato, sugar beet and cotton. These GM foods are typically only found in processed foods and cannot be purchased as fresh food.
These include, for example:
- GM soybean
- GM canola
- GM corn
- GM potato.
Some potential food uses or GM foods currently approved for sale in Australia and New Zealand include:
- Soybean – Soy foods include soy beverages, tofu, soy oil, soy flour.Products containing soy may include breads, pastries, snack foods, baked products, fried products, edible oil products and special purpose foods.
- Canola (oilseed rape) – Canola oil. Products made with canola oil may include fried foods, baked products and snack foods.
- Corn – Corn foods include kernels, oil, corn flour and sugar. Products containing corn may include baked goods, fried foods, edible oil products, confectionery, special purpose foods and soft drinks. PLEASE NOTE if you are on a gluten-free diet many gluten free products for example pasta contain corn. Ensure your brand does not therefore contain GE ingredients.
- Potato – Whole potatoes. Products containing potato may include snack foods, processed potato products and other processed foods.
- Sugar beet – Sugar beet is processed into sugar which may be used in processed foods.
- Cotton – Cottonseed oil and linters may be used in vegetable oils, fried foods, baked foods, snack foods, edible oil products and small goods casings.
Consumers can determine if a food product contains GM ingredients by simply looking at the label as all food containing GM products is legally obliged to be labelled as such.
Yet whilst Australia and New Zealand have one of the most comprehensive labelling regimes for GM food in the world, you will still have to be diligent.
Greenpeace, in response to the fact that the majority of Australians do not want to eat genetically engineered (GE) food, has released a list, the “true food guide.”A guide that:
– highlights brands currently sold in Australia that may allow GE ingredients to contaminate their supply
– those that need to be encouraged and rewarded for actively avoiding ingredients from GE crops. I have included it below to help you in your quest to survive the great supermarket scramble, happy hunting….
|Green List: Brands that actively avoid ingredients from GE crops.||Red List: Brands that may allow GE ingredients to contaminate their supply.|
Aldi exclusive brand
Carman’s fine foods
Dick smith foods
Jaina Dairy Foods
King Island Dairy
Leo’s Fine food and Wine
Manning Valley Eggs
Milawa Free Range
Sandhurst Fine Foods
Weis ice cream
You’ll Love Coles
George Weston foods
Pace Farm Eggs