It’s no surprise that I have plenty of disdain for companies who jump on the “healthy” bandwagon and confuse consumers with their “natural” claims. I’ve shared my views on organic companies (like Kashi) who have sold out to Big Ag companies yet continue to market themselves as some small, local company who cares for nothing more than your personal health.
But even if the organic laws are stringent and you can trust the USDA Organic labelling, we’re now discovering that these same companies are compromising in other ways; funnelling funds to defeat Prop 37, California’s much-needed fight to label all products that include GMO ingredients. With the 8th largest economy in the world, this bill passing in California will set the standard for the rest of the United States and even Canada.
The following companies, led by Monsanto in an effort to defeat the mandatory labelling bill, don’t want you to know their dirty little secret. They want to keep fooling consumers into thinking we’re all doing our world and our health a favor by spending more money on their products while they then redirect that money to keep the law, and consumers, trampled beneath their feet.
“Just as we’ve observed in Europe, where labeling of food containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is mandatory, we fully expect that when given a choice, consumers will choose organic or non-GMO products,” said Mark A. Kastel, Co-Director of Wisconsin-based Cornucopia. “And the industrial food lobby is fully cognizant of this – that’s why they’re fighting like hell against this grassroots effort.”¹
ORGANIC AND “NATURAL” COMPANIES TO BOYCOTT²:
Kashi (owned by Kellogg, which has contributed $632,000 to defeat Proposition 37). Kashi’s so-called “natural” breakfast cereals have tested positive for the presence of GMOs. Kellogg also owns the “natural” brands Bear Naked and Morningstar Farms.
Silk soymilk (owned by the nation’s largest dairy, Dean Foods, which has contributed $253,000 to the effort to kill Proposition 37). Dean Foods also owns White Wave Tofu and Horizon milk and dairy products.
R.W. Knudsen (owned by Smucker, which has contributed $388,000 to defeat proposition 37). Smucker also owns Santa Cruz
Cascadian Farm (owned by General Mills, which has contributed $520,000 to defeat proposition 37). General Mills also owns Larabar and Muir Glen.
Honest Tea (owned by Coca-Cola which has contributed $1,164,400 to defeat Proposition 37). Coca-Cola also owns Odwalla.
Naked Juice (owned by PepsiCo which has contributed $1,716,300 to defeat Proposition 37). PepsiCo also owns Tostito’s Organic and Tropicana Organic.
“O” Organics (Safeway’s private label line of organic foods). Safeway, like other “No on 37” companies, is a dues-paying member of the Grocery Manufacturers Association, which has contributed $375,000 to defeat Prop 37.
It’s sad to see small, health-minded companies like Larabar bite the bullet but everyone has a price. And the day they sold out to General Mills was the day they were no longer trust-worthy. The same goes with every other company who’s been found to be supporting the defeat of Prop 37.
The harsh reality is, I don’t believe any company who can produce enough product to sell across the country (never mind in Costco or Target!), is going to be able to maintain ethical standards. The demands are too high and they compromise to make ends meet. Because of this, I eat local whenever possible and strongly suggest you do, too. At the very least, try to avoid the subsidiaries of Big Ag companies.
The only way Big Ag companies will change is when their profits dwindle — so vote with your fork!