Wholesome Sweeteners and the Non-GMO Project
Think about the last time you were in a supermarket. Did you notice how shoppers studied the labels? Bet you were one of them, making an informed choice.
Product labels tell consumers a lot: where the food comes from, who made it, what’s in it and how it’s produced.
In essence, a label speaks volumes about a company’s business beliefs and practices. It’s a disclaimer, and even perhaps, a corporate character assessment all in plain view, right there on the grocery shelf.
As a company specializing in organic and all-natural products, Wholesome Sweeteners welcomes a close, careful read of labeling for its sugars, syrups, nectars and honeys. As vice president of marketing, Pauline McKee figures an informed consumer is the company’s best competitive advantage.
For example, the natural goodness of Wholesome Sweeteners’ products recently was verified as being Project Non-GMO (genetically modified organisms) compliant, she says. This verification makes it the first sweetener company to be classified this way. (http://www.nongmoproject.org/)
According to its website, the non-profit Project Non-GMO is made up of “manufacturers, retailers, processors, distributors, farmers, seed companies and consumers” – all of whom share the belief that consumers should know if their food is genetically altered or not.
The magnitude of this global issue is top of mind with Wholesome Sweeteners. “Moving forward, consumers will be showing an increasing concern over genetically modified food ingredients,” says McKee. “This new verification simply reinforces our long-standing position to always be GMO free.”
For the food industry, movement in this direction is needed now more than ever, she believes. “As more of our grains and crops become genetically modified and deliberately mixed with the non-GMO crops, it is very difficult for consumers to exercise their right to choose between GMO and non-GMO foods.”
The recent verification status adds to Wholesome Sweeteners’ market distinction of also being the only Fair Trade™ certified sweetener company in the United States, McKee points out.
The Fair Trade certification label, which appears on the company’s products, means farmers who produced the food – usually poorer farming communities in Latin America, Africa and Asia – are being given a fair shake in the marketplace.
“We have been working diligently for months to become non-GMO verified, too,” says McKee. “Besides our company website, the new Project Non-GMO logo will begin to appear on our literature and on product packaging.”
From the ISC Newsroom