For most of us, going gluten free meant drastic changes in our diet, our lifestyle and our relationships. For me, many aspects of this journey are both fabulous and challenging. One positive change was that all of a sudden, I was aware of EVERY ingredient going into my body. On one hand, this was a bit overwhelming and made me want to crawl into a hole. :) On the the other hand, it meant I was about to embark on the healthiest journey of my life. Gone are they days that I put food in my mouth without knowing what’s in it. Now, I take full responsibility for how my choices will affect my body. And that has been AWESOME.
Which leads me to this: October is national non-GMO month.
Holla. What is non-GMO? It means food products are NOT
Genetically Modified. Way Better Snacks
is a non-GMO project verified and will now share a bit more about what this means.
Is all organic food non-GMO?
To clarify, GMO avoidance is a central tenet of organic foods. Unfortunately, because of the increased proliferation of GMOs over the last 15 years, there is a growing contamination risk to all non-GMO crops, including organic. Organic products still have a much lower risk of contamination than conventional products, and the organic industry is working hard to keep organic non-GMO. What the Non-GMO Project does that the National Organic Program does not do is require testing and set action thresholds. These tools make it possible to exercise basic control over contamination, and give consumers reassurance that the most rigorous GMO avoidance practices possible have been followed for both organic and conventional products.
Can non-organic corn be non-GMO? Yes. Corn can be conventionally grown (non GMO), organically grown (non GMO), and conventionally grown (GMO). At this time approximately 88% of the U.S. Corn crop (as of 2011) is planted with GMO seed. While only conventional farmers can intentionally plant GMO corn, with the proliferation of GMO corn both conventional and to a lesser degree organic are at risk of GMO contamination. We go to great lengths to ensure that our corn is non-GMO. Not only do we purchase non-GMO corn, our products are verified by the Non-GMO Project—the only third party verifier of non-GMO food and products in North America. For our products to carry the Non-GMO Project Verification mark they must be in full compliance with the Non-GMO Project’s standard. This means:
- There is ongoing testing of all at-risk ingredients—any ingredient being grown commercially in GMO form (like corn) is tested to make sure that the ingredient is non-GMO.
- We have rigorous traceability and segregation practices in place in order to ensure ingredient integrity through to the finished product: http://www.nongmoproject.org/learn-more/understanding-our-seal/
- Verification is maintained through annual audits, along with onsite inspections for high-risk products.
Hope you all have a great week, thanks tons for sharing your gluten free journey with me.
AKA- The Celiac Diva
PS- For More Information on Non GMO Month: Visit the Non-GMO Month website: www.nongmomonth.org.
“Ask Anne” Q &A with Schar’s Dietitian