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Will McDonald's Serve Genetically Modified Fries?

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

Ahead of a federal approval decision on genetically engineered potatoes, a national consumer group today launched a campaign that urges McDonald's to refuse to serve genetically engineered fries.

National consumer and environmental group Food & Water Watch is asking the fast food giant to "publicly refuse to source the 'Innate'-brand genetically engineered (GE) potato now up for regulatory approval by U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The GE potato developer, J.R. Simplot, currently provides McDonald's with most of the potatoes it uses in its french fries."

This afternoon McDonald's USA told the Tribune in a statement that, "Food biotechnology is allowed and permitted in the U.S. by local and federal government regulatory bodies, including the FDA and USDA." But "Currently, our potato supply does not include genetically engineered potatoes.

"McDonald's USA reviews, on a case-by-case basis, the status of regulatory approvals, customer acceptance, prospective consumer benefits, cost and potential safety and environmental impacts of specific food items as they become available to the market."

Food & Water Watch, which has also been active in the campaign to label genetically engineered food in the U.S. (as it is in much of the industrialized world), says McDonald's support on the issue would be instrumental because, among other things, it is the largest purchaser of potatoes in the U.S.   

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