Organic Consumers Association

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McDonald's and Gerber Say No to GMO Apples

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Genetic Engineering page and our Millions Against Monsanto page.

WASHINGTON, DC - In letters to Friends of the Earth, the world's largest restaurant chain McDonald's, and leading baby food manufacturer Gerber have confirmed they do not plan to sell or use the Arctic apple, the first genetically engineered apple that has an application pending before the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

"McDonald's and Gerber are wise to distance themselves from the Arctic® apple. They understand their customers, particularly parents, are leery of unlabeled, poorly studied genetically engineered foods," said Lisa Archer, director of the Food & Technology Program at Friends of the Earth. "This is further proof that the market is rejecting GMOs."

Commenting on the possible loss of Washington State's GMO labeling initiative, Archer said: "Companies invested in profits from GMOs might have bought Washington's election, but they can't stop the market from rejecting their products."

In a letter dated Oct. 31, 2013, Gerber confirmed its policy to avoid genetically modified organisms in fruit and vegetable purees for babies, and said it has no plans to use the Arctic® apple. Gerber is owned by Nestle, which sells many processed foods containing GMOs, and has spent over $2 million fighting GMO labeling voter initiatives in Washington and California.

McDonald's, which sells apple slices and is expanding its fruit and vegetable menu offerings, confirmed in a letter dated Nov. 1, 2013, that it also has no plans to use Arctic® apples. The apples are genetically engineered using a controversial new method  that turns off the apple's natural browning mechanism.

These food companies join major apple growing associations, including USApple and the Northwest Horticultural Council (representing Washington apple growers who grow more than 60 percent of U.S. apples), that have stated opposition to this GMO apple.   

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