Genetically Engineered Foods(GMOs)

What Are Genetically Engineered Foods (GMOs)?

Genetically engineered foods are created by adding foreign genetic material (DNA) to a plant or animal in combinations that cannot occur in nature. 

These plants or animals sometimes are called genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. 

The vast majority of GMOs on the market are bred for herbicide tolerance and insecticide production. Despite biotech industry messages to the contrary, there are NO GMOs available designed for increased yield, improved drought tolerance, or nutritional superiority or any other consumer benefits. At the same time, there is a growing body of peer-reviewed research linking GMO consumption with decreased fertility, allergies, abnormalities in organs and immune response, and more. Essentially all genetically engineered seeds on the market today contain foreign viral or antibiotic DNA, and often both.

Labeling and I-522

More than 340,000 Washington Voters have brought Initiative 522, which is the initiative to label gentically engineered foods to the November, 2013 election ballot. 

I-522 would require most foods sold in Washington to be labeled if produced through genetic engineering. Read the full initiative here

Main Market Co-op fully supports I-522 and is taking many steps to increase awareness of genetically engineered foods. During the month of October, which is Non-Gmo month, the Co-op will be featuring in-store promotions, employee picked Non-GMO favorites, and informative posts on our website and through social media. 

Avoiding Genetically Engineered Foods

Buy Organic-Organic standards prohibit genetic engineering as a method of production.

Buy Fresh Whole Foods and Cook Fresh-Very little fresh produce is gentically engineered. Eating fresh fruits and vegetables is a great way to avoid GMOs and to have a healthier and more nutritious diet.

Watch for the Non-GMO Project Certified Seal-The Non-GMO Project believes that you have a right to know what’s in your food, and a right to choose Non-GMO. To this end, they maintain North America’s only third-party standard for GMO avoidance. Since the Project’s inception, thousands of products have been verified to this rigorous standard, and many of your favorite foods may already bear the Non-GMO Project Verification Mark on their packaging.

This seal indicates that the ingredients and practices used in making your food have met a strict standard focused on traceability, segregation, and testing of high-GMO-risk ingredients (e.g. corn, soy, canola, sugar, etc.)  Keep an eye out for this trustworthy label while you shop for dinner, or your favorite snack.

You can also check out this link, which includes 9 tips to help shoppers remain GMO free.



Celebrate Non-GMO Month With Us

This year’s non-GMO month is more important than ever for Washingtonians. We have the opportunity to be the first state to require GMO labeling on the food we buy in grocery stores. Large corporations such as Monsanto and almost every large processed food company in the U.S. are spending unheard of amounts of money to confuse voters on this initiative. GMOs have untold potential to alter our bodies, environment, and local farming economies, but they are virtually unregulated at this point.

Please lend your support by reading about GMOs either here or another trusted site, supporting the Yes on 522 financially, or voting on this landmark issue on November 5th.

The Co-op is celebrating non-GMO month with tons of sales on certified Non-GMO foods as well as an employee generated display with information on GMOs and a selection of our favorite non-GMO foods. Remember, voting with your dollar is always the best way to show corporations what is most important to you.

Look for products everywhere with the certified non-GMO label above. Hopefully we can look forward to GMO labeling on ALL foods so that shopping for the health of our bodies and environment is no longer a guessing game.

The Main Market Co-op would also like to give a big Thank You to PCC Natural Markets in Seattle for lending us their content and photos for this page. Please visit their website at

Here are examples of what a few current GMO labels look like:


                GMO Label on Cheerios                     GMO Label on Betty Crocker               GMO Label on Hersheys Product