As far as genetically engineered foods go, there are few more lesser known than one of the latest and most infamous lab creations to hit the market — genetically engineered apples from the Okanagan Specialty Foods Company.
The company created the apples to serve a purpose that could potentially benefit the bottom line of food companies that sell large amounts of products, as the new GMO apples have a longer shelf life and don’t turn brown when they become overripe like normal apples.
But as usual the consumer is being left in the dark and getting the short end of the stick, as the new GMO apple products aren’t being labeled, and they’re being sold on the website of America’s largest online retailer to boot.
Now a petition has been launched that aims to put a stop to this madness.
Sign the Petition to Stop GMO Apples!
The petition is aimed at the so-called “Arctic Apple,” which is now being sold on Amazon.com completely unlabled.
The apples were made using the CRISPR technique, which allows scientists to tinker with the genetic structure of our food in a laboratory by “editing” its genes.
Proponents say that this process is more precise than cross-breeding plants traditionally in the field as has been done for thousands of years, but critics point out that these foods have not been independently tested for long-term safety and are approved using data from the manufacturers and scientists themselves, with lax standards.
A recent study found that using the CRISPR technique may cause hundreds of unintended mutations to the genetic structure of the target organism, but it was later retracted. However, two new studies have also raised alarms over a potential cancer link using this new technique for potential medical applications (a technique Monsanto just invested over $100 million in by the way).
“We didn’t want to put ‘GMO’ and a skull and crossbones on the package,” said the apple’s founder Neal Carter during a presentation in San Francisco when asked why the product won’t be labeled as being GMO.
“I don’t think we’re hiding behind the fact that we use that technique,” Carter also said according to CBCNews about GMO labeling. “We don’t want to demonize the product by putting a big GMO sticker on it.”
What Carter isn’t telling you is that traditional breeders have already created organic non-browning hybrid apple crops, rendering the new GMO apples unecessarily risky and completely useless.
How to Avoid GMO Apples on Amazon
The new GMO apples are not especially widespread in stores yet, although they can be found in select locations in the Midwest and other assorted areas.
To avoid them on store shelves, be sure to buy organic whenever possible and look for packaged or pre-sliced apples labeled “Arctic,” the brand name of this particular GMO creation.
On Amazon.com, the apples are being sold as “Arctic ApBitz Dried Apple Snacks.”
For more information, check out and sign the petition, which is being sponsored by eight different activist and media organizations.
“Unlabeled genetically engineered apples could find their way into fruit snacks, juice, baby foods, or apple sauce.
“Please listen to your customers’ concerns and reject genetically engineered apples. We demand an end to selling unlabeled GMO apples.”