Pressure Mounting Against GM Salmon
Environmentalists are saying that US approval of genetically modified
salmon can be thwarted on the retail level, if not on the regulatory
As US officials have signaled the salmon could be the first
genetically modified animal approved for consumption, environmental
groups are attacking the plan from afar, attempting to get retailers to
pledge not to sell the fish, reported The Washington Post.
"The goal is to make sure there is not an available market for
genetically engineered seafood," said Dana Perls, a campaigner with
Friends of the Earth, which links environmental groups together on a
"People don't want it, and markets are going to follow what people
want," Perls said.
While the Food and Drug Administration appears poised to approve the
genetically modified salmon, Target, Whole Foods, and Trader Joe's have
already pledged to not sell the product.
Environmental groups are looking to expand on that, lobbying Krogers, the
country's largest grocery chain, to follow suit.
A spokeswoman for Safeway, the country's second largest grocery chain
said there were not plans there to carry GMO salmon.
The genetically modified salmon has a growth hormone from the Chinook
salmon and a gene from an eel-like fish called an ocean pout. It grows
twice as fast as the standard salmon, the Post said.
Massachusetts company AquaBounty Technologies applied for regulatory
approval of the GMO salmon in 1995.
While environmental groups claim the fish is not safe to eat and would
wreck havoc on the environment if it was ever released, AquaBounty Chief
Executive Officer Ron Stotish said the GMO fish could take pressure off
wild fisheries already in trouble from overfishing. He accused
environment groups of fear-mongering.
By putting pressure on retailers to boycott GM
salmon, environmental groups are taking away distribution outlets for the
genetically altered product. If some retailers do consider marketing GM
salmon, adverse media publicity is likely to discourage consumer
purchases. Retailer pressure and
consumer awareness maybe key to the GM labelling debate in North
An update on GM labelling will be given at the North American edition of
the Sustainable Foods Summit. The summit
will take place in San Francisco on
More details are on the
Washington Post / Organic Monitor
Simply Natural Brand
Discount grocer Aldi, which is steadily
expanding its presence in the Atlanta area, continues to emphasize its
impressively high quality at impossibly low prices with the launch of
its new brand, ‘‘Simply Nature," which features simple foods made with
only all-natural or organic ingredients.
Simply Nature products range from cereal, honey, fruit bars and apple
juice, to pasta sauce, pizza, salsa and various snacks. The new line of
Simply Nature products is available in select markets, including
Atlanta-area stores, with a national rollout planned for early 2014.
"At Aldi, we know that finding great-tasting, wholesome foods is
important to our customers. With the new Simply Nature line of
all-natural or organic products, customers can get high-quality,
nutritious options at an affordable price," said Thom Behtz, Jefferson
vice president of Aldi.
"We're always striving to offer healthy options at prices that make it
possible to maintain a healthy lifestyle – and that's exactly what the
Simply Nature brand offers."
Beyond Simply Nature, Aldi continues to increase fresh produce
offerings, currently having nearly 70 varieties of fresh fruits and
vegetables. Aldi also has several organic produce items in most
Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Virginia
and Washington D.C. stores with plans to introduce organic produce items
in all Aldi stores early next year.
Organic produce items currently featured include bananas, apples,
tomatoes, baby carrots and salad mixes.
Source: News Release / Organic Monitor
Sobeys Launches Certified Humane Meats
supermarket chain Sobeys is introducing Certified Humane meat in its new
"Better Food For All" program.
Chef Jamie Oliver recommended the Certified Humane program to Sobeys
after his team visited many farms and ranches on the Certified Humane
program in the US and Canada, including duBreton, which has been
Certified Humane for over ten years, and Aspen Ridge Natural Beef, which
has been Certified Humane for two years. Because of Chef Oliver's
recommendation of Certified Humane there are two new Certified Humane
chicken producers in Canada: Blue Goose Pure Foods in Ontario and
Sunrise Farms in British Columbia.
Jamie Oliver's Technical Development Manager, Daniel Nowland has spent
time working with all of the farming groups involved, ensuring standards
are at a level which supports Jamie Oliver's campaigning in the farmed
animal sector. Jamie Oliver's team works globally to affect the lives of
farm animals, which they believe in turn influences the quality of the
"The Certified Humane programme supports our beliefs about raising the
bar in animal farming. This helps the animals, the environment, and
gives us a much better, more sustainable food product. We really believe
in higher-welfare farming as a great solution to quality food that is
accessible and affordable," said Nowland.
Sobeys, a national retailer in Canada, launched the "Better Food For
All" initiative "to make better food accessible to Canadians." Chef
Jamie Oliver is a key consultant on the project and advocated the
selection of the Certified Humane certification to be required for the
Sobeys "Better Food for All" program.
duBreton, based in Quebec, is a producer of natural pork. "At duBreton,
we believe that hog farms can be efficient and profitable while using
sustainable farming practices and raising animals in ways that reduce
stress by providing spacious shelter, comfortable resting areas, proper
facilities, and the freedom to express normal behavior," said Vincent
Breton, The President of duBreton.
Colorado-based Aspen Ridge Natural Angus Beef is Certified Humane.
Emphasis is placed on raising cattle naturally and providing the animals
with humane care in a low stress environment. "Animal welfare is a
priority for our company and the Certified Humane certification fits in
perfectly with our values as a company and gives our customers the
assurance that Aspen Ridge's products meet the highest animal welfare
standards," said Cody Schadegg, Program Manager.
Blue Goose Pure Foods, based in Ontario, will provide their Certified
Humane Organic Chicken, Organic Chicken Parts, Antibiotic and
Animal-Byproduct Free (AABF) Chicken, and AABF Chicken Parts to Sobeys.
The company has always had a strong belief in animal welfare, "We live
off the land and acknowledge the responsibility that comes with doing
so. At Blue Goose we treat our land and animals with respect and
dignity. We believe if we take care of them, they will take care of us."
Family-owned and operated Sunrise Farms, of Surrey, British Columbia,
operates with animal welfare as their top priority. Dr. Neil Ambrose,
HND Ag, DVM, ACPV serves as the Director of Veterinary Services and Food
Safety, is a certified Professional Animal Auditor and supervises the
entire live production system from farm to plant. Dr. Ambrose said, "We
are proud of the good farming practices we follow to raise our chickens.
We make the care and welfare of our chickens a top priority to ensure
their good health and well-being at all times."
Humane Farm Animal Care (HFAC) is a national non-profit organization
dedicated to improving the lives of farm animals by certifying their
humane treatment. Supported by more than 50 humane organizations, the
Certified Humane Raised and Handled program is nationally recognized as
the Gold Standard for certifying animal welfare from birth through
Sustainable Foods Summit
The evolution of eco-labels - including organic and
certified humane - is
the major theme of the
Sustainable Foods Summit. The next edition of
this international series of summits will take place in San Francisco on
More details are on the
Proliferation of Food Eco-Labels to Continue
Source: Entertainment Close-up