Our world is complex and dynamic, with people of all different needs, wants and objectives – there’s a lot going on out there, and that’s true of our food industry as well. When we see an issue that has a particular resonance to the Co-op’s core values and our owners and food, we’ll let you know.

• GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) Food Labeling
What is GMO? From the Non-GMO Project: GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms,” are plants or animals created through the gene splicing techniques of biotechnology (also called genetic engineering, or GE). This experimental technology merges DNA from different species, creating unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacterial and viral genes that cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding. The Co-op strongly supports labeling at a manufacturer level. We believe that customers have the right to know what is in food in order to make informed choices that align with their values. For now, buying certified organic or certified Non-GMO is the only sure way to avoid GMOs. Almost all conventional soy, corn and canola crops grown in the US are genetically modified. Learn more about which foods are genetically modified or affected by GMOs here: www.nongmoproject.org/learn-more/what-is-gmo/. Labeling Currently, GMO labeling is at risk due to the Senate bill S.2609, which would ban mandatory GMO labeling, and nullify labeling laws already in effect in states like Vermont and Maine. It will go to a vote on March 16 at 11am. The bill has been dubbed the 'DARK (Denying Americans the Right to Know) Act' by opponents. Information is available here. Unfortunately, a similar version of the bill passed through the House of Representatives in July.  If you want to see GMOs labeled, it is imperative to contact NY state senators, Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles Schumer. Contact your New York State Senators Ask them to support the labeling bills. It's easy and an exciting way to affect our food system! Here's how:

1. Find your representatives. Senator Gillibrand and Senator Schumer's info are linked above.

2. Call their office.

When a staffer answers, tell them you're a constituent. They may ask for your name and/or address.

Say: "I'd like Senator _________ to oppose S.2609, which will ban mandatory labeling of genetically modified foods. I want to be able to choose whether I'm purchasing or eating GMOs."

3. The staffer will record your comments for your senator. From here, feel free to discuss the issue with your legislator's staff, or ask about the senator's stance on the issue.

4. Be sure to thank your senator's staff before you end the call!

More in-depth information about the how and why of contacting your Senators is available here. Thank you for making a difference in our food system!