By Daisy Luther
If a food company invented a new version of a typical food and then packaged it in a box without the ingredients, etc. listed on the packaging, there would be quite the outcry.
So why is it that Okanagan Specialty Fruits is allowed to market a new variety of GMO apples without telling people the reason they’re so “special” is that they are genetically modified?
While the fruit won’t be explicitly labeled as a GMO product, that information will be available by scanning a QR code on the packaging. “We are selling it under the Arctic brand and we’ve had a lot of press and attention, so I assume most people will know what it is,” company founder Neal Carter said. (source)
Note Neal Carter’s words: “most people will know what it is.”
So how, exactly, will “most people know” that the fruit they’re buying has been tampered with? Are we actually supposed to carry around a QR scanner at the store to figure out what the heck we’re buying?
What apple varieties should you look out for?
To most folks, a Golden Delicious apple is a Golden Delicious apple. And there are more fruity bullets to dodge than just the Golden Delicious. (If you’re wondering why I’m so against the genetic modification of our food, here’s a documentary you should really check out.)
By next year, there could be four different apple varieties to dodge in stores if you want to keep your diet free of genetically modified ingredients.
Golden Delicious, Granny Smith and Fuji varieties have been approved by the USDA and Canada. An Arctic Gala could be approved in 2018. Only Goldens and Granny Smiths have been planted long enough to produce fruit in commercial quantities by next fall. (source)
The Frankenfruit, which was 20 years in the making, was approved for sale in February 2015 by the Department of Agriculture. The FDA ruled them fit for human consumption a month later.
This FDA press release was dated March 20, 2015:
Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration completed its evaluation for two varieties of apples genetically engineered by Okanagan Specialty Fruits, Inc., and for six varieties of potatoes genetically engineered by J. R. Simplot Company and concluded that these foods are as safe and nutritious as their conventional counterparts.
Okanagan’s Granny Smith and Golden Delicious varieties of apples, known collectively by the trade name “Arctic Apples,” are genetically engineered to resist browning associated with cuts and bruises by reducing levels of enzymes that can cause browning. (Click to Article)