Concerned about Genetically Mutated Food?
The Sumac Cafe and Veggies Catering Campaign do not use G.M. Ingredients in their food, and actively oppose the commercialisation of GM crops.
During 2003 the government ran a national debate about GM food and we asked our customers to become involved, using the information on display at the Sumac Centre and at Veggies Events. The debate closed on 18 July 2003 and as expected the government ignored the 80%+ who stated that they did not wish to see the introduction of GM production in the UK.
For more information see the GeneWatch website at http://www.genewatch.org/
For ideas for action against GM see http://www.togg.org.uk/direct.html
Subscribe to 'G M Watch newsletters' at http://www.gmwatch.org/sub.asp.
You can choose monthly, weekly or daily messages.
Or check out the messages on the website archive at http://www.gmwatch.org/archive.asp
Click here to see Veggies Organic Policy
We'd be pleased to hear your views. (click here to email). Some comments are posted here:
- "Because the potential dangers are so great I do not believe we will have the scientific knowledge to undo potential disasters caused by GM for many tens of years. The suggested limit for how far pollen would spread has totally removed any confidence I might have had in those dealing with the situation currently. It was so totally against everyday experience and intuition, that it is almost beyond belief that people (including politicians) could believe such nonsense."
- "At a time when culls are failing to remove ruddy ducks, hedgehogs from North Uist and rats from Lundy, it is incomprehensible that it is being contemplated to release far more pervasive species of plants into the environment."
- "The 'hungry' countries of the world do not need technological fixes imposed and controlled by corporations over which they have no control. What they need is the control over their own food supply, and relief from the debt-imposed poverty that denies them access to the most productive land and clean water supplies. There is sufficient food available now, but much of it is being used to feed western consumers, often inefficiently via intensively reared animals."
13th July 2003 : Vegetarians - unwitting consumers of GM food : Food safety campaigners concerned by `hidden' contents of popular soya products.
The following section has not been updated for a while. For current information see The Totnes Genetics Group who work to raise awareness about the issues surrounding the introduction of genetically modified organisms into our food chain.
Action Against GM Foods
However you will still find useful information here, in particular links to supermarkets. Why not contact them and find out how (if) they have improved on their standards since November 1999?
sample GE-Free policy statement
Info from email from : RBBAX@aol.com : Thu, 11 Nov 1999 16:11:08 EST
Good progress has been made in the campaign against GM foods, but we must keep up the pressure because the vast majority of the UK public are still consuming GM-affected foods every day - mainly in the form of GM derivatives and enzymes, which are a health risk according to many geneticists.
So please take a few minutes to contact some of the companies listed below to express your concerns about GM products (many calls are free). A few of these companies may well be on the verge of eliminating even GM enzymes from their products. Your call will help make a difference!
URGENT:Marks & Spencer have said they will remove all GM enzymes from their products if customers request this.
Please call them on Freephone 0800 389 4367, fax 0171-487-2679, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org - and request that they do so. M&S are currently use GM animal feed in the production of their milk, butter, cream and cheese products, so you might also like to request that they switch to non-GM animal feed. If you are a long-term customer, cardholder, or shareholder with M&S, or any of the companies listed below, please mention this when calling or writing.
URGENT:: Many hundreds of Tesco's own-brand products are still affected by GM, yet Tesco seen very reluctant to go GM-free. So please contact them to voice your concerns and demand food free from GM ingredients, derivatives and enzymes. You might also like to request that they remove GM animal feed from the production of their milk, dairy and meat products.
Write to Tesco Stores Ltd, Delamare Road, Cheshunt, Herts, EN8 9SL. Fax: 01992 620855.
Or phone FREE on 0800-50-5555. Or e-mail: email@example.com
(For suggestions on how to phrase letters, see "Sample Letter To Food Companies", below.)
URGENT: Call Safeway on 0181 848 8744, fax: 0181 573 1865, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Many hundreds of their products are still affected by GM ingredients/ derivatives//enzymes, plus their GM tomato puree is still on sale!. So request that they go totally GM-free, and that they stop using potentially harmful GM animal feed to produce their meat, dairy and poultry products.
ASDA/WALLMART still have hundreds of own-brand products which are affected by GM.
Write to Archie Norman, Asda Stores Ltd, Great Wilson Street, Leeds, LS11 5AD. (Fax: 0113-241-8666), or call Free on 0500 1000 55;
demand that Asda remove all GM derivatives, flavourings, colourings and enzymes from their products. Also request that GM animal feed is not used in the production of Asda milk, dairy and meat products.You may also like to ask for a list of Asda products affected by GM "derivatives". (Don't let them fobb you off with Asda's current "GM product list", which only includes about 20 products that contain GM ingredients ie, GM protein).
McDOUGALLS FOODS LTD say: "We do not currently have any products which require labelling under GM legislation". So in other words - yes, you've guessed it - most of their products, including Viota Cake Mix, Be-Ro, Atora, Hovis Bread Yeast (contains the GM enzyme Alpha Amylase), McDougalls Flour, and McDougalls Batter Mix and Cake Mix, are all likely to be affected by GM derivatives and enzymes.
So please contact McDougall's Foods Ltd, Lincoln Road, High Wycombe Buckinghamshire, HP12 3QS (Tel: 01494 -428599. Fax 01494 -428358) and let them know your views, and mention the UK-wide boycott of their products by consumers and campaigners.
GM-FREE BREAKTHROUGH! Well done to Weetabix Ltd, who now have a total GM-free policy that includes ensuring that the wheat starch and added vitamins in their products have not been produced using GM derivatives or enzymes. If only we could have as much confidence in Kellogg's and Nestle's cereals!
KELLOGG'S are still declining to say if GM enzymes are used in the manufacture of the vitamins and Riboflavin used in their cereals; and a few of their products, including Health Bars and Pop Tarts still contain GM soya oil. Children are most likely to be at risk from GM-affected breakfast cereals.
Please write to the Managing Director, Kellogg Co (G.B) Ltd. Talbot Road, MANCHESTER M16 OPU. Fax: 0161-869 21000. Tel: 0161-869 2000 - and let him know that you/your family/organisation have joined the UK-wide boycott of Kellogg's products until such times as these are guaranteed free from GM derivatives and GM enzymes.
TREBOR BASSETT'S confectionery is likely to be affected by GM. The company appear to be putting out contradictory information and cleverly worded letters to give the assurance that they are GM-free. But their Pascall Fruitang range, produced before May 1999, contains a GM warning label. And the following products may well be affected by GM derivatives or GM-derived enzymes:- Bassett's Liquorice Allsorts, Murray Mints, Cadbury's Chocolate Eclairs, Trebor Extra Strong Mints, Butterkist Popcorn, Bassett's Jelly Babies, Maynards Wine Gums, etc. etc. Millions of children throughout the UK consume this company's products every day, so it should be logical to keep them totally GM-free. Call 01622 757421, or fax 01622 688683.
ALLINSONS "EASY BAKE YEAST" contains ascorbic acid, which is very likely to be derived from GM crops - Allinsons were unable to deny this when we called them. Some brands of Allinsons flour may also be affected by GM.
Call Westmill Foods on 01279 658473, or fax 01279 715282 - and request that all GM derivatives and enzymes be removed. (Allinsons have already removed GM ingredients from their products and will no doubt be open to your suggestions).
JOIN THE BIG BOOTS BOYCOTT.
Boots the Chemist still need convincing that consumers don't wish to buy their GM products. Write to Boots the Chemists Ltd, 1 Thane Road West, Nottingham, NG2 3AA (Fax: 0115-959-5525) - and let them know that GM campaigners and consumer groups are now boycotting all Boots food, skincare, and pharmaceutical products until these are guaranteed free of GM ingredients and derivatives. Also request a copy of Boot's policy on GM, plus a list of Boot's products affected by GM ingredients, derivatives and enzymes. If you don't have time to write, please call their Customer Services Dept. on 0115 918 2000. Warning: Beware of assurances over the phone that Boots products are "GM-free".
Many of SUPERDRUG'S products, including food, vitamins and skincare products, toothpaste etc. are affected by GM derivatives and enzymes
Call 0181-684-7000. Fax: 0181 684 6102.
PLEASE TAKE A FEW MINUTES to call the following companies (some calls are free) and ask them to remove all GM ingredients, derivatives and enzymes from their products, and to source Non-GM cattle feed for the production of their dairy, poultry and meat products.
Sainsbury: Freephone 0500 301010. E-mail: mailto:email@example.com
(GM enzymes still used in thousands of Sainsbury own-brand products; and GM animal feed is being used in the production of their milk, butter, cream, cheese and meat etc).
Heinz: Call 0181 848 2223, Fax: 0181-848-2345 (many products affected by GM derivatives/enzymes, including the Weight Watchers range).
McVitie's: Freephone: 0500 011710. (GM derivatives and enzymes still used).
Batchelors: Freephone 0800 222722. (most products affected)
Unilever/Van-den Bergh: Call 0171 822 5252, fax: 0171 822 5951/5898 (most products affected).
McDonald's: Call 0990 244622 (local rate calls apply) or fax: 081-700 7050 (GM derivatives and enzymes still being used in many of their products.Call and request that these be removed, and that Non-GM animal feed be used in the production of their products. (McDonald's took the lead during the BSE crisis, so they will likely act on GM animal feed - if consumers demand it).
The Co-op still use GM ingredients, derivatives and enzymes in hundreds of their products. Call them free on 0800 317827, or e-mail:
(also request that GM animal feed is not used in the production of their products).
Waitrose. Why are selling own-brand foods which are affected by potentially health-damaging GM derivatives and enzymes? E-mail: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org (also request that they remove GM animal feed from the food chain)
USEFUL TIP: Don't be fooled by cleverly worded assurances over the phone. Always request it in writing.
NESTLE declined to comment on whether their products contain GM derivatives, or whether Shredded Wheat is produced using GM-derived enzymes - all they will say is that "no GM "material" is present in their products. Write to: The Corporate Affairs Director, Nestle (UK) Ltd, St Georges House, CROYDON, Surrey CR9 1NR, Direct fax: 0181-681-1218.
Kraft Jacob Suchard say they have removed GM soya and maize "protein", as well as soya lecithin, from their products, but that they still use "some" GM derivatives (although they declined to state this in writing to us). Call 01242 236101 or Fax: 01242 - 512084 - and request that all GM derivatives and GM enzymes are removed from their products. Also ask for a list of products affected by GM derivatives and enzymes. Products include Kraft, Kenco, Terry's, Suchard, Bird's Custard etc..
Greggs, the nationwide bakery chain, say they have removed all GM soya and maize "protein" from their products, but hundreds of their products are still affected by GM derivatives and enzymes! Write to Gregg's plc, Clayton Rd, Newcastle, NE2 1TL (Fax: 0191-281 1444) - and request a list of Gregg's products affected by GM derivatives and enzymes.
GM-CLOTHING BOYCOTT! The mail-order clothing company LANDS END are still selling clothing made from GM cotton - BUT rumour has it that they may be about to source GM-Free cotton!. So please help make the difference by calling them on Freephone 0800 220106 and request that they source natural, non-GM cotton. Ask for written details of their position on GM, and let them know that a UK-wide boycott of all Lands End products is now under way, backed by anti-GM campaigners and consumer groups, who say that buying GM cotton clothing boosts Monsanto's profits and contributes to the genetic pollution of our planet via GM crops.
Other companies who are selling clothing made from GM cotton include Marks & Spencer (Freephone 0800 389 4367, or e-mail: mailto:email@example.com ) - and Arcadia Group, who own Burton, Principles, Dorothy Perkins, Top Shop, Racing Green, Hawkshead, Evans, and Wade Smith. Call Arcadia FREE on 0800 3890841 ( ask for the Corporate Press department) or e-mail your views directly to the Managing Director : mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
GM ALERT. Many companies are conning consumers into believing that their products are "GM-free" ie, totally unaffected by GM. By writing to the Letters Page of local and national newspapers and magazines, using the following sample letters as a guide, you will greatly help to empower people around the country to ask the right questions, and thereby obtain proper GM-free foods, vitamins, skincare products, medicines and vaccines.
SAMPLE LETTER TO THE PRESS (1)"IS IT REALLY GM-FREE?"
Anyone wishing to avoid genetically modified products should find the following tips useful:
When contacting companies to enquire if foods, vitamins, medicines, and children's vaccines are GM-free, don't be fooled by assurances such as: "Our products contain no GM ingredients, GM material, or GM protein". Such a statement usually implies that GM derivatives or enzymes are present, or that GM has been used in some part of the production process. So always obtain a guarantee in writing, that the product contains no GM ingredients, derivatives or GM-derived enzymes, and that no GM has been used in any part of the production process.
For foods which are really GM-free, favour organic products which carry the Soil Association logo.
SAMPLE LETTER TO THE PRESS (2)GM-FOOD RISKS
The Government assures us that genetically modified foods, ingredients and derivatives are safe to eat. Yet independent genetic experts are warning, that because of the risk of toxic contamination, such ingredients are a serious risk to health.
For example, the GM food product Tryptophan, which killed 80 American consumers and left 1,500 disabled, was 99% pure, contained no DNA, and was considered safe to eat - yet it contained a lethal toxin. Like the majority of consumers I do not wish to take risks with GM foods, and I would encourage everyone concerned about this important issue to write to the Directors of major food stores and food manufacturers to demand GM free foods.
SAMPLE LETTER TO FOOD COMPANIESTo: The Chairman, Safeway Stores Ltd.
Please be advised that I will no longer purchase any food,beverage or skincare product sold by your company which contains GM ingredients, derivatives or enzymes.
There is sufficient scientific evidence to show that the genetic modification of food is intrinsically dangerous. It involves making irreversible changes in a random manner to a complex level of life about which little is known. Leading geneticists have warned that this hit-or-miss approach must disrupt the natural intelligence of the plant or animal to which it is applied, leading to health-damaging side-effects and irreversible environmental problems.
Unless I receive confirmation that your company intends to remove all GM ingredients, derivatives and enzymes from your products in the very near future, as well as GM animal feed from the production of your dairy, poultry and meat products, I shall have no option but to boycott all of your products, and will encourage my family, friends and local community to do likewise.
Meanwhile could you please send me a comprehensive list of your own-label food, beverage and skincare products which are affected by GM ingredients, derivatives and enzymes.
And finally, You may find the following quotation interesting as it clearly illustrates the threat to health from GM foods etc
"Genetic engineering bypasses conventional breeding by using artificially constructed parasitic genetic elements, including viruses, as vectors to carry and smuggle genes into cells. Once inside cells, these vectors slot themselves into the host genome. The insertion of foreign genes into the host genome has long been known to have many harmful and fatal effects including cancer of the organism." - Dr Mae Wan-Ho, geneticist, and scientific adviser to the Third World Network.
MAKE COPIES OF THIS LIST FOR FRIENDS AND FAMILY, GM CAMPAIGN GROUPS AND WOMEN'S GROUPS ETC.
Please send any replies that you receive from the above companies,. to:
GM Food Concerntxt108@aol.com
Fax: 0870 088 2600
Info from email from : RBBAX@aol.com : Thu, 11 Nov 1999 16:11:08 EST
Reprinted by : VEGGIES CATERING CAMPAIGN, 245 Gladstone Street, Nottingham NG7 6HX
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