FSA research published in January 2013 found support for GM-free labels, including on meat, milk and eggs from GM-fed animals, which are currently excluded from the GM labelling regulations:
- a slight preference for labelling indicating the presence of GM, rather than labelling indicating the absence of GM.
- once made aware of of the use of GM animal feed by farmers, participants typically considered that products from animals fed GM feed should be labelled, consistent with previous FSA research.
The Scottish Farmer reports that the Food Standards Agency is now preparing to debate whether foods derived from genetically modified ingredients should be labelled as such.
Germany, France and Austria already operate ‘without biotech’ labels on animal products.
In an open letter to FSA board members, GM Freeze urged the agency to back moves to harmonise GM-free labelling across the EU, which would put labels on foods containing GM ingredients and, crucially, on foods from animals reared on GM feed.
GM Freeze spokesman Pete Riley said: “Consumers have been demanding comprehensive labelling of GM use in food production for many years, but the FSA has always failed to support it, despite the fine words in their vision statement about ensuring consumers have ‘informed choices’.
We hope that the FSA will recommend harmonisation with the good practice prevailing in Germany, France and Austria – and support its extension to all EU countries.