Especially with meats, terms we think of as good, aren’t usually what we would think. Legal terms for packaging foods can be very open ended or not regulated at all.
A good example of misleading language used in marketing is the term free range. We would be lead to believe that instead of being kept in a small cage it’s entire life, they have fields to roam. This only means they have room to walk several feet. It is better, but it’s now what one would think with a label that says free range.
Light with items like sodium or fat only means 25% than a median of competitors. Almost no items that say zero calories have non. It means 5 calories or less a serving.
Lightly sweetened or breaded has no legal definition whatsoever. Natural also has no legal meaning.
Labeling genetically modified foods is a big debate here in Oregon. A lot of company’s don’t want the bill to pass, because it’ll cost a bit more to label. The biggest reason is the fear of people not eating the same after food is more accurately labeled.
Be careful wen buying food, what the label says isn’t always what it would lead you to believe. I encourage you to do further research on food labeling and what it means. I think it’s important to hold company’s accountable to not mislead consumes.
Here in Oregon, GMO labeling is on the ballot. If voted yes, starting the 1st of January any GMO foods here would have to be labeled if they are indeed genetically modified. It’s been a hot topic here in Oregon. There doesn’t seem to be too much opposition by voters to the initiative.
Personally I think it’s a good idea to label GMO’s, people should know the state of what they’re eating. I do think though, consumers will still buy the same product even if the initiative passes. Food that is in its purely natural state is usually labeled organic. I know for myself I would buy exclusively organic products, but they’re far too expensive.
The food market is set up to make consumers buy processed foods that are cheaper to produce and cheaper for the consumer. Corn in the United States is actually a poison by the FDA standards. Corn in America has been so genetically modified that it produces it’s own pesticide. We don’t export as much food, because a lot of other places don’t want it.
Giving corn a label that says its a GMO won’t stop many people from eating it. Telling the consumer that the FDA labels it as a poison and creates its own pesticide might though. Telling the consumer their food has been genetically modified is a good first step, but we must go further.
We as the consumers must push for a better solution. Instead of having GMO’s labeled, let’s push for less genetically modified food in the first place. The disease is more important than the symptom. As a culinary student this issue is an important one to me.