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How Cargill flubbed its non-GMO labeling partnership, angering farmers and consumers

| | April 14, 2017
Cargill Non GMO
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

As soon as Cargill announced that an outside group had certified more than a dozen of its ingredients as non-GMO, the agribusiness giant was publicly scourged by some of its closest allies.

The moment should have been a good one for the world’s largest agriculture business. But a backlash came fast and furious online, pitting familiar factions against one another: those for and those against ­genetically modified foods.

The situation highlights the tricky balance large food companies are trying to strike among competing interests. For a sprawling company like Cargill, it shows the challenge of appeasing its customers without alienating its suppliers.

Critics were particularly vexed by Cargill’s choice of third-party ­certifier: the Non-GMO Project, which opposes genetic modification in food production. Since Minnetonka-based Cargill is one of the world’s largest producers of genetically modified foods, many of its suppliers, as well as some in the science community, felt betrayed.

Related article:  Opinion: Think twice before purchasing products with the 'fake news'-spreading Non-GMO Project label

“The Non-GMO Project regularly uses attacks on family farmers to promote its verification process. It is disappointing that Cargill thought it was acceptable to work with Non-GMO Project and support that messaging,” wrote Amanda Zaluckyj, an attorney and self-described “ag-vocate” whose family farms in Michigan, in an e-mail.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: How a moment that looked like PR win for Cargill turned into a kerfuffle

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