The survey found that most moms (80%) feel confident they know what is in the food they are putting on the table each day, and for seven in 10 that is due to the detailed ingredient labeling on products. However, the reality is that not every aspect of a food's ingredients is shared -- namely, GMOs, also called genetically engineered ingredients.
According to the survey, close to half (45%) of mothers have never heard of genetically engineered ingredients. Obviously, these moms would not know to seek out GMO labeling; however, once they learned what GMOs are, an overwhelming majority -- nine out of ten moms -- think it is important for brands to indicate whether such ingredients are used in their foods.
GMOs are made from crops that have had their DNA modified with genes from other plants, animals, viruses or bacteria in a laboratory.
"We're not sure how GMOs will affect our health because there haven't been any long term studies to date. That said, in 30 countries around the world there are significant restrictions or outright bans on GMO foods, because they're not considered proven safe," says Arjan Stephens, executive vice president of Sales and Marketing at Nature's Path. "This is cause for concern for many consumers, and why more and more are demanding labeling in the U.S."
If brands were required to indicate whether genetically engineered ingredients were used to make their food, the survey found:
* Many moms (59%) would want to learn more about these ingredients.
* 46% would be left feeling worried about the effect they would have on their health and that of their family.
* Some (38%) might even consider switching to a brand that doesn't include genetically engineered ingredients.
* 33% might not feed that food to their family at all
After learning more about genetically engineered ingredients, more than half (52%) of moms surveyed think that one of the three most important things products should show on their labeling is an indication that a food is free of such ingredients. This is far greater than the less than one third (31%) of moms who felt the same before receiving information on genetically engineered ingredients. This is not surprising since more than half (52%) of moms think genetically engineered ingredients would have a negative impact on their health and that of their families.
From the October 18, 2011, Prepared Foods' Daily News.