Ben & Jerry's to stop using genetically-modified ingredients

Love ice cream? Hate GMOs? You're in luck

By Katie McDonough

Published June 2, 2013 8:24PM (EDT)

  (via the Ice Cream Informant)
(via the Ice Cream Informant)

Ben & Jerry's has announced it will stop using genetically-modified ingredients in its ice cream, according to a new statement from the company.

Willie Nelson, of Willie Nelson's Country Peach Cobbler fame, is undoubtedly pleased.

The ice cream super brand announced its commitment to going GMO-free this week, but conceded that the process of sourcing non-GMO ingredients will be complex and that it may take until 2014 to complete the transition:

Now, we aren’t scientists, we make ice cream, but we do know there are questions about whether GMO technology is truly living up to its promise of making bigger and better food, or whether it’s just simply another way to further industrialize and consolidate our food and agriculture system.  Because Ben & Jerry’s has a long history of supporting family owned farms, we’re concerned that increasing GMO crops comes at the expense of smaller farms, which we believe is a more sustainable kind of farming...

There is a growing movement of consumers, and health and environmental advocates who are demanding that companies be transparent about whether or not their products contain GMOs.  Those advocates and citizens are calling for mandatory labeling of all products made with one or more GMO ingredient. In fact, there are already more than 40 countries around the world that have mandatory labeling of GMO foods. We support those calling for transparency and a consumer’s right to know and support the push for mandatory labeling.  We ought to all have freedom to choose whether or not we want to eat food that has been genetically engineered.  We think this is  a fundamental right...

In addition to supporting the call for transparency in food labeling, Ben & Jerry’s has also committed to sourcing only non-GMO ingredients for our products. Our goal is to do so by the end of 2013, but we will still be making this conversion into 2014.

Katie McDonough

Katie McDonough is Salon's politics writer, focusing on gender, sexuality and reproductive justice. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at

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