Organic Consumers Association

Campaigning for health, justice, sustainability, peace, and democracy

Promises, Promises

We launched our campaign to get Ben & Jerry’s to go organic in July, after we broke the news about Roundup weedkiller contamination in Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.

In October, we announced that samples of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream in four European countries also tested positive for glyphosate. This time, warned in advance, Ben & Jerry’s countered with a promise to “launch glyphosate-free ice cream.”

Let's ignore the obvious for a minute—shouldn’t a company that brags about its commitment to the environment and social responsibility already be selling glyphosate-free ice cream?—and take a closer look at what Ben & Jerry’s promised.

Ben & Jerry’s said that by 2020, it would aim to eliminate glyphosate-contaminated ingredients from its supply chain—presumably by not sourcing ingredients from suppliers that use glyphosate to dry out crops before harvest.

Ben & Jerry’s also promised to introduce a line of organic ice cream in 2018, amounting to 6 percent of the brand’s total ice cream production in the U.S.

So far, we’ve heard no further news on either promise. But this much we know—even if the ice cream maker makes good on those promises, Vermont’s dairy farmers will still be feeding their cows GMO corn, and still polluting the state’s waterways.

It's not just Vermont that's being poisoned by Ben & Jerry's. The company also sources dairy in western states—all from non-organic industrial dairy farms.

According to the latest pesticide data coming out of Vermont, as reported this week by Regeneration Vermont, the use of pesticides in Vermont is on the rise. And it's Vermont dairy farms, fueled by GMO corn, that are largely to blame.

According to Michael Colby, Regeneration Vermont co-founder, the “toxic stew” of pesticides polluting Vermont’s waterways includes 34 different products. In 2016, the most heavily used product was glyphosate—62,458 pounds. 

That’s a lot of Monsanto Roundup weedkiller dumped in a state that ranks 43rd in size. It makes for one “dirty dairy” industry. And Ben & Jerry’s—owned by the international consumer products conglomerate, Unilever—is one of, if not the biggest player in that industry.

Read ‘62,458 pounds of Monsanto's weedkiller. In one year. In one small state.’ 

Sign the petition to Ben & Jerry’s

Sign the petition to National Co-Op Grocers

Find out if your natural food store or co-op sells Ben & Jerry’s 

If it does, send this letter to the store manager 

Let us know what happens when you contact your store 

Download this flyer and hand it out in front of your local Ben & Jerry’s retailer 

Download this glyphosate fact sheet and share it widely 

Make a tax-deductible donation to support our campaign asking Ben & Jerry's to go organic. 

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