The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
The right to know what's in one's food is undoubtedly a contentious issue. Just last month, the House passed the so-called DARK Act (Denying Americans the Right to Know), which preempts state and local authority to label and regulate genetically engineered foods (GMO). A recent analysis from Environmental Working Group revealed that big food and biotech companies have vastly increased their lobbying expenditures in the first half of 2015, spending an estimated $51 million to prevent GMO labeling.
Meanwhile, surveys show that the vast majority of Americans—as much as 93 percent, according to a New York Times—want their food labeled. So, when Chipotle—already wildly popular to begin with for its delicious burritos and its sustainability-minded menu—became the first national restaurant chain to pledge to cook with only non-GMO ingredients, it was no surprise that people were going to like it even more.
In an NPR segment this week, reporter Peggy Lowe highlights how the move has been a major boon to the restaurant chain, and other companies are taking notice and "jumping on the GMO-free bandwagon." But as sales of GMO-free food skyrocket, Lowe points out, some polls indicate half of all Americans don't know what it means for a food to be genetically modified and that just because it's GMO-free does not necessarily mean it's organic or healthy as some believe.
— Fruhlein Econar (@bafrowfrow) July 22, 2015
"The demand for these foods falls under what the industry calls the 'health halo'—the perception that a food is healthy," says Lowe. She speaks with Cathy Calfo, executive director of California Certified Organic Farmers, who points out that the U.S. already has a GMO-free label: the organic label.
Listen to the full segment here:
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Emily Deanne
Shower shoes? Check. Extra-long sheets? Yep. Energy efficiency checklist? No worries — we've got you covered there. If you're one of the nation's 12.1 million full-time undergraduate college students, you no doubt have a lot to keep in mind as you head off to school. If you're reading this, climate change is probably one of them, and with one-third of students choosing to live on campus, dorm life can have a big impact on the health of our planet. In fact, the annual energy use of one typical dormitory room can generate as much greenhouse gas pollution as the tailpipe emissions of a car driven more than 156,000 miles.
By Lorraine Chow
Kokia drynarioides is a small but significant flowering tree endemic to Hawaii's dry forests. Native Hawaiians used its large, scarlet flowers to make lei. Its sap was used as dye for ropes and nets. Its bark was used medicinally to treat thrush.
States that invest heavily in renewable energy will generate billions of dollars in health benefits in the next decade instead of spending billions to take care of people getting sick from air pollution caused by burning fossil fuels, according to a new study from MIT and reported on by The Verge.
Hawaii's Kilauea volcano could be gearing up for an eruption after a pond of water was discovered inside its summit crater for the first time in recorded history, according to the AP.
By Kristin Ohlson
From where I stand inside the South Dakota cornfield I was visiting with entomologist and former USDA scientist Jonathan Lundgren, all the human-inflicted traumas to Earth seem far away. It isn't just that the corn is as high as an elephant's eye — are people singing that song again? — but that the field burgeons and buzzes and chirps with all sorts of other life, too.
Humanity faced its hottest month in at least 140 years in July, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said on Thursday. The finding confirms similar analysis provided by its EU counterparts.
By Hans Nicholas Jong
Indonesia's president has made permanent a temporary moratorium on forest-clearing permits for plantations and logging.
It's a policy the government says has proven effective in curtailing deforestation, but whose apparent gains have been criticized by environmental activists as mere "propaganda."