The Original Half-Popped Popcorn Snack
Enjoyed by young and old alike, Grandpa Po's Originals are certified organic by California Certified Organic Farmers.
Nutra Nuts, Inc. is committed to the right of consumers to know what is in the foods they eat. We support legislation to require disclosure of any GMO ingredients and/or processing agents. As part of our commitment to human and environmental health, our company has instituted a comprehensive program with the goal of using only non-GMO ingredients in all of our products. We strive to source and sell only ingredients that contain no genetically modified organisms.
Our organic products are certified as non-GMO by our organic certifiers.
Since the mid-1980s the entire food industry-from food scientists to growers to manufacturers-has conducted an extensive experiment on the American public. Foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) have reached the dinner table without being tested for potential long-range effects and without government regulation.
What are GMOs?
The Organic Trade Association defines genetically modified organisms as "...made with techniques that alter the molecular or cell biology of an organism by means that are not possible under natural conditions or processes." Scientists create GMOs by isolating a gene or genes, then penetrating cell nuclei and inserting the foreign genes into the cell, resulting in their incorporation into the DNA of the host cells.
The proliferation of GMOs is being driven by the desire to increase crop yields, increase resistance to pests and plant diseases, increase product shelf life, and to make foods more attractive. In addition, GMOs have huge profit potential for their corporate patent holders.
GMOs in Controversy
Consumer resistance to GMOs is growing at national and international levels, fueled by environmental and health concerns. For many, the central issue is the right for consumers to know what is in the foods they buy. According to Citizens for Health, "Even some of those not opposed to the principle of genetic engineering are concerned that the science and economics of releasing GMO products into the market is outpacing the safety issues of how these new species will affect health and the environment."
GMOs are widely used today, yet we don't yet know what the environmental and health effects may be. It can take years for food allergies and sensitivities to develop. Without explicit assurance of long term safety, fears of a potential Pandora's box are growing. Negative effects including food allergies, threats to beneficial insects, and genetic drift have already been documented. Some scientists are also concerned about the potential creation of "super bugs" and "super weeds" that may devastate future crops.
The merging of animal and plant genes that is occurring also creates serious issues for ethnic and religious traditions including the Kosher Laws, which mandate separation of animal products from certain food classes.
How to Know it's Non-GMO
Due to lack of government oversight, consumers are currently unable to distinguish foods that contain GMOs from those that don't. In fact, current U.S. food labeling laws place constraints upon food companies that want to inform their customers that the foods they produce are free of GMOs.
There are two ways to avoid genetically modified organisms. One is to buy products that have been third party certified as organic. Organic certifiers exclude GMO ingredients.
The second method is to conduct testing that positively identifies the presence or absence of GMOs. Spectrum, our oil supplier, has created a model Non-GMO Verification Program for this purpose. The extent of testing required depends upon the ingredient. Where there are no GMO patents on file and where no prior history of bioengineering exists, extensive testing is not necessary. For ingredients where there is or has been active or extensive genetic manipulation, comprehensive testing is required. For example, canola and soybeans have had extensive genetic alteration; therefore, we perform rigorous testing on every lot, including organic varieties. In addition, the entire growing system is inspected and audited. Throughout the process, all seed and oil identified as non-GMO is segregated from untested or GMO-contaminated seed and oil.
Seed - Oil seed that farmers purchase prior to planting must be independently guaranteed to be non-GMO. Sellers are required to provide affidavits of non-GMO status to Spectrum, and farmers must keep records and retain planting seed.
Crude Oil - When the crop is harvested and delivered to the processor, crude oil-which is the yield from the first crushing-is tested again in its liquid state, where there is no chance that GMO materials may be missed. Testing is valid only when performed on oil in its crude state because as oil is further refined, genetic markers that identify the presence of GMOs are removed.
Testing Methods - Each test in our program is based on DNA, a stable molecule whose use in testing processed foods is highly accurate. An independent third party lab with appropriate credentials conducts the testing for our program using three specific GMO tests.
Test A is a DNA control test that measures the test sample against another sample already known to be GMO-negative.
Test B is a Gene Specific Reaction Test (specifically, Primary Screening Test P35S) that detects the presence or absence of genetically modified DNA.
Test C employs polymerase technology, which allows minute fractions of unnatural genes to be amplified based on their DNA and RNA chains. This extremely sensitive Gene Specific Reaction Test can detect pollination pollution that has had errant genes contaminate clean non-GMO crops.
Field Identification - If the crude oil tests positive for GMO materials, then the harvested seed samples that have been retained will be tested to identify which fields suffered the contamination. To date this step has not been necessary due to the rigorous prior-stage testing done as part of our program.
Certificate of Non-GMO Compliance
Spectrum will issue a Certificate of Non-GMO Compliance for all suspect ingredients:
"These products have been tested for the presence of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). None have been detected. Detection levels are at one part per million (1ppm) or lower."
Spectrum's Non-GMO Verification Program is a leading-edge program in the natural foods industry and the best in the oil category. Since its inception, it has already proven that it works; our company has been able to identify GMO-containing seed and reject it before the seed was planted. Our program is your assurance that we take your health, that of your family, and that of the environment very seriously. You can be sure that our goal is to sell only non-GMO products, and to have verification in hand to
1 Organic Trade Association, August 1999 draft of American Organic Standards.
2 Citizens for Health, October 1999, Regulation, Economics, and Science of GMOs.
3 Transgenic pollution, also called pollination pollution, genetic drift or wind drift, occurs when pollen from GMO crops blows into other areas. Organic farmers have reported incidences of crop contamination by GMO materials.
For more information about GMOs, you may contact:
The Campaign to Label Genetically Engineered Foods
© 2013 Grandpa Po's Originals