When the Center for Food Safety brought the approval of Impossible Foods’ heme ingredient to the federal courts, its reasoning was centered on the way soy leghemoglobin is produced.
“This heme produced using [synthetic biology] has never been consumed before,” Center for Food Safety Policy Director Jaydee Hanson said in a release about the lawsuit. “FDA should have required additional independent testing to make sure that this new substance does not cause allergic reactions or other health problems in people.”
In its opinion, the 9th Circuit determined that the FDA followed the proper standards for determining Impossible’s heme was safe. The ruling notes Impossible Foods had also submitted a study for the coloring safety determination to the department along with a notification that FDA had already granted the ingredient generally recognized as safe status.
The position taken by the Center for Food Safety is not surprising. The organization, which opposes industrial agriculture, has always been against GMO food.
While this ruling does not set a precedent, it may be an indicator of how the legal system will deal with cases questioning the safety and scrutiny of bioengineered food in the future.