GMO Labeling: What’s Good for Consumers Is Good for Business

By: Jerry Greenfield, Co-Founder, Ben & Jerry’s (Guest Blogger)

At Ben & Jerry’s, we’re really proud of the ingredients we use in our ice cream and we’ve always been happy to tell our fans what’s in the pint. We love talking about our long-term relationship with the St. Albans Dairy Co-op, the Greyston Bakery and Rhino Foods. We’re proud of our fair-trade and non-GMO ingredients, which is why it’s so hard for me to understand why any company wouldn’t want to scream from the rooftops about the ingredients it uses.

It’s bad enough that these big food and ag companies won’t voluntarily tell you whether they use GMO ingredients; now they’ve introduced legislation in Congress that would keep my home state of Vermont from enforcing its first-in-the-nation mandatory GMO labeling law. We call it the bill in Congress the DARK Act (Deny Americans the Right to Know Act), and it would strip Vermont’s and every other state’s authority to require GMO labeling and provide honesty and transparency in our food system. It’s really difficult to understand why these companies are going to such lengths and expense to avoid telling you what’s in the food they want to sell you.

That’s why I’m so pleased to be in Washington D.C. today with Just Label It and dozens of other business leaders and CEOs. We’re hitting Capitol Hill to let lawmakers know that ultimately what’s good for consumers is good for business.

We know that minor changes to food labels don’t increase the cost of food. I’ve been in the food industry for more than 35 years, and I can tell you that slight label changes do not raise food costs. Companies like Ben & Jerry’s make changes to their labels all the time without boosting the cost of the products we sell. It’s simply a cost of doing business in the food industry.

At Ben & Jerry’s, we’re happy to stand with more than 90 percent of Americans who simply want the right to know what’s in the food they feed themselves and their families. These big companies may have lots of money, but we’ve got lots of people, and if we stand together we can win.

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