Planet Earth

The Anti-GMO Movement's Clever Marketing Gimmick

Collide-a-ScapeBy Keith KloorMar 18, 2013 2:13 AM


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Several weeks ago, Whole Foods, the organic supermarket chain many people have a love/hate relationship with, announced that by 2018 any of its products containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) would be labeled. A Bloomberg Businessweekarticle called the move "clever marketing" and said:

Transparency is something worth paying for these days.

I find it amusing that this whole GMO labeling campaign has been framed as some kind of consumer rights cause. It's the "right to know" sales pitch by the anti-GMO movement that has been clever marketing, which Whole Foods is quite happy to capitalize on: 

We are the first national grocery chain to set a deadline for full GMO transparency.

Everyone knows the whole point of this is to scare people away from eating those godforsaken "frankenfoods." You want to know what transparency really means? This is from an organic grocer in Washington. Somefolks on Twitter have been discussing those labels. What does GMO Alert! say to you? UPDATE: Just catching up with this New York Timeseditorial that asks: "Why label genetically engineered food?" UPDATE: The owner of the Washington store that is slapping its own GMO labels on food products writes on Facebook that he looks forward to a future "that doesn't use the human population as guinea pigs in a massive genetic experiment."

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