Quantcast

Ben & Jerry's to Introduce Glyphosate-Free Ice Cream

Food
Michael Kappel / Flickr

Ben & Jerry's announced it will stop using ingredients made with crops that are chemically dried with glyphosate—the primary ingredient in Monsanto's widely used Roundup weedkiller—and will source 100 percent organic dairy following reports that several of its flavors tested positive for the controversial chemical.

In a statement, the company said it was "disappointed" to learn of the test results even though only very low and "safe levels" were detected.


"We were disappointed to learn that recent testing in the United States and Europe revealed trace levels of the commonly-used herbicide glyphosate in several of our flavors. Disappointed, but not totally surprised," the company said. "Glyphosate is one of the most widely used herbicides in agriculture and is everywhere—from mainstream food, to natural and organic food, and even rainwater—and that's the issue."

Glyphosate, the most widely applied herbicide worldwide, has been found in everyday foods such as cookies, crackers, popular cold cereals and chips.

The chemical caught the world's attention back in 2015 when the World Health Organization's cancer assessment arm classified glyphosate as "probably carcinogenic to humans."

Monsanto has vehemently denied the cancer link and argues its product is safe.

Ben & Jerry's has a track record of supporting sustainable food systems. For instance, the ice cream brand only uses cage-free eggs, sources fair trade ingredients, has banned genetically modified organisms (GMO) ingredients by origin and supports mandatory labeling of GMOs. The milk and cream it uses comes from family farmers who do not treat their cows with the synthetic hormone rBGH.

Last year, the Burlington, Vermont-based company introduced a line of certified vegan ice cream made with almond milk not just satisfy the lactose-intolerant crowd, but environmentally conscious ice cream lovers, too.

"At Ben & Jerry's, we've worked hard to be responsive to our fans' desire for a more sustainable and less industrialized kind of farming," the company said. "That's why we've taken many steps over the years to move towards a less chemically intensive and more transparent food system."

The company detailed two steps it is taking:

1. No more ingredients using glyphosate-dried crops. Ingredients like wheat and oats are commonly sprayed with glyphosate as a drying agent before harvest. This practice is the most common and likely pathway for the presence of glyphosate in the food system. By no later than 2020, we will stop sourcing ingredients that have been made with crops chemically dried using glyphosate. We understand and share our fans' desire to limit the amount of chemicals in the food system, which is why this step is important. In addition, we intend to advocate for policies that would end use of glyphosate as a chemical drying agent.

2. Sourcing organic dairy. We are excited to bring an innovative, new product line to market in 2018 that will source 100% organic dairy in the base mix. We believe this sends an important signal to our fans and suppliers of our support for a more sustainable approach to agriculture. We anticipate our new line will represent up to 6% of our total U.S. sales.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

The Dakota Access pipeline being built in Iowa. Carl Wycoff / CC BY 2.0

The fight between the Standing Rock Sioux and the owners of the Dakota Access Pipeline is back on, as the tribe opposes a pipeline expansion that it argues would increase the risk of an oil spill.

Read More Show Less
Scanning electron micrograph of Yersinia pestis, which causes bubonic plague, on proventricular spines of a Xenopsylla cheopis flea. NIAID / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

A middle-aged married couple in China was diagnosed with pneumonic plague, a highly infectious disease similar to bubonic plague, which ravaged Europe in the middle ages, as CNN reported.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Milk made from almonds, oats and coconut are among the healthiest alternatives to cow's milk. triocean / iStock / Getty Images Plus

Dairy aisles have exploded with milk and milk alternative options over the past few years, and choosing the healthiest milk isn't just about the fat content.

Whether you're looking beyond cow's milk for health reasons or dietary preferences or simply want to experiment with different options, you may wonder which type of milk is healthiest for you.

Read More Show Less
Greta Thunberg stands aboard the catamaran La Vagabonde as she sets sail to Europe in Hampton, Virginia, on Nov. 13. NICHOLAS KAMM / AFP via Getty Images

Greta Thunberg, the teenage climate activist whose weekly school strikes have spurred global demonstrations, has cut short her tour of the Americas and set sail for Europe to attend COP25 in Madrid next month, as The New York Times reported.

Read More Show Less
The Lake Delhi Dam in Iowa failed in 2010. VCU Capital News Service / Josh deBerge / FEMA

At least 1,688 dams across the U.S. are in such a hazardous condition that, if they fail, could force life-threatening floods on nearby homes, businesses, infrastructure or entire communities, according to an in-depth analysis of public records conducted by the the Associated Press.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored

By Sabrina Kessler

Far-reaching allegations about how a climate-sinning American multinational could shamelessly lie to the public about its wrongdoing mobilized a small group of New York students on a cold November morning. They stood in front of New York's Supreme Court last week to follow the unprecedented lawsuit against ExxonMobil.

Read More Show Less

By Alex Robinson

Leah Garcés used to hate poultry farmers.

The animal rights activist, who opposes factory farming, had an adversarial relationship with chicken farmers until around five years ago, when she sat down to listen to one. She met a poultry farmer called Craig Watts in rural North Carolina and learned that the problems stemming from factory farming extended beyond animal cruelty.

Read More Show Less
People navigate snow-covered sidewalks in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on Nov. 11 in Chicago. Scott Olson / Getty Images

Temperatures plunged rapidly across the U.S. this week and around 70 percent of the population is expected to experience temperatures around freezing Wednesday.

Read More Show Less