Get Ready for the No GMO Challenge

by Ann Marie Michaels on April 17, 2009

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No GMO Challenge

Get ready to clean out your cupboards. Next Wednesday, on Earth Day, we at Real Food Media are launching the No GMO Challenge.

Similar to the Eat Local Challenge or other similar types of blog challenges (The Growing Challenge is another), the No GMO Challenge is a way to organize, educate and build awareness around the issue of genetically modified food.

According to Jeffrey Smith, leading expert on GMOs and bestselling author of Seeds of Deception and Genetic Roulette, GMOs or genetically modified organisms are in about 75% of the foods at the supermarket. Most processed foods contain either soybean oil or soy lecithin, or high fructose corn syrup.

According to a 2001 poll:

  • 52% believe GM foods are unsafe
  • 13% are unsure about them
  • 93% say the government should require labels on food saying whether it’s been genetically modified

(Source)

The majority of Americans don’t trust GM foods and we want labels on our food. The sad thing is, there’s so little information about genetically modified food. Most of us are eating it every day and we don’t even know it.

Check out this 10-minute video of a lecture by Jeffrey Smith on the health risks of GM foods:

To help get the word out about GM foods, we’ll be asking bloggers and readers to make a pledge to avoid GMO food for 30 days. This means doing your best to avoid the 4 main GM crops: corn, canola, soy and cottonseed. We’re not asking folks to be perfect — it’s not easy to avoid GM foods!

But we are asking you to try to avoid these foods and to blog about it, tweet about it, post about it on Facebook, and get the word out as much as possible. We’ll have videos and news articles you can link to or blog about or tweet, and you can also just write about your experiences going GM-free.

There will be a weekly blog carnival every Monday to share our stories about GM food, and every Thursday we’ll have a contest. We have lots of great sponsors including US Wellness Meats, Zukay Live Foods and Tropical Traditions who will be giving away prizes like grass-fed meats, GMO-free salad dressings, and organic coconut oil.

It’s a rolling challenge, so you can join at any time. And of course, you don’t have to stop at 30 days — you can keep going as long as you like. And the longer you participate in the challenge, the more prizes you can win.

Please join us next Wednesday, April 22nd at Real Food Media’s No GMO Challenge and take the No GMO Challenge!

In the meantime, to read more about GM foods, visit the Institute for Responsible Technology and The Campaign.

Photo credit: Traditional Seeds
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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

FoodRenegade April 17, 2009 at 7:59 AM

YAY! This will be so exciting, and is a great way to bring awareness of this issue to the general public.

Thanks for submitting this to Fight Back Fridays today. I can’t think of a better way for us to Fight Back than to take this challenge, and I am *really* looking forward to participating!

Cheers,
KristenM
(AKA FoodRenegade)

FoodRenegade’s last blog post..Fight Back Fridays — April 17th

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Jenny @ Nourished Kitchen April 17, 2009 at 9:50 AM

I can’t tell you how THRILLED I am about this! We’ll do okay in cooking at home since we’re from-scratch folks, but eating out will prove challenging indeed. Most sugarbeets are now GMO too, which means that many candies and chocolates are straight out.

Jenny @ Nourished Kitchen’s last blog post..CookingTF.com Giveaway: 1-yr Mailer Subscription

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Sheri aka Mom April 17, 2009 at 10:19 AM

My mission with Moms for Safe Food is to get the word out about GMO’s. There are still too many of us who don’t even know about it. My blog post from last Friday was about how we’ve been trying to eat GMO free. It’s not easy and every time I think we’re there, I find something else.

It’s time to get any and all genetically engineered food preferable off the market but at the very least labeled.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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Local Nourishment April 17, 2009 at 10:35 AM

I’m in! I’m already skipping every usage of corn, canola, soy and cottonseed I can find. But there’s lots hidden that isn’t on labels too.

Local Nourishment’s last blog post..Sally Fallon Reference on “House”?

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cheeseslave April 17, 2009 at 10:54 AM

Wheeee! You guys are AWESOME! I’m so excited to get this going!

It’s women who make the food buying decisions for most families, and we need to start exercising that power.

I do not want my daughter growing up in a world where the food supply is completely controlled by multinational corporations that do not give a rat’s a** about our health.

We can do better than this. We have to become educated, educate others and get the word out. If we stop buying their junk, they can’t continue selling it.

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cheeseslave April 17, 2009 at 10:56 AM

Hi, Sheri,

I’m so glad you commented! I saw your post last week on Fight Back Fridays and I went to your site to contact you but I could not find a way to comment, nor could I find a contact me link.

Glad to have you on board!

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Motherhen68 April 17, 2009 at 11:46 AM

Since I’ve been reading all these great Real Food blogs, I’ve discovered how much soy is in everything! I mean, come on, soy in chocolate??

I’m going to think about doing this challenge. It’s going to be really hard as the mayo I use is made w/soybean oil. Drats.

Motherhen68’s last blog post..Sardines: Who Knew?

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Michelle @ Find Your Balance April 17, 2009 at 12:53 PM

No problemo. I avoid GMOs like the plague. But convincing others to do the same? Great challenge!

Michelle @ Find Your Balance’s last blog post..Extrude me, breakfast is served

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Kimberly Hartke April 17, 2009 at 3:00 PM

This is going to be an impactful campaign. I can’t wait to participate. Thanks, Ann Marie for spearheading this!

Kimberly

Kimberly Hartke’s last blog post..Does the U.S. Cancer Industry Really Want to Find a Cure?

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Carolyn April 17, 2009 at 3:35 PM

I have been trying to avoid GMO’s at home for a couple years. They are much harder to avoid when you go out. So, I guess that means less going out. Less candy. Being even pickier than usual. They’re gonna love me at work!!

Carolyn’s last blog post..Real Food for Breakfast

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cheeseslave April 17, 2009 at 4:07 PM

Motherhen,

We don’t have to be perfect. It’s not about being perfect. It’s just about making the effort. And more than that, it’s about *getting the word out*. Telling your friends, blogging, tweeting, emailing, facebooking, etc. The more people start blabbing about this, the less they will be able to get away with it!

Re: mayonnaise, it’s so easy to make your own. And if you add a little whey like Sally Fallon recommends, you can make it a lacto-fermented probiotic condiment!

When I make mayo, I use Chaffin Family Orchards mayonnaise. I’m going to post a recipe soon.

http://www.chaffinfamilyorchards.com/store/results.php?category=13

It is so light and mild that I swear, it tastes just like storebought mayo (better, I think).

WIlderness Family Naturals also sells really excellent mayonnaise.

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cheeseslave April 17, 2009 at 4:11 PM

Carolyn,

Again, it’s not about being perfect. We’ll all do the best we can. Even if we avoid GMOs 75% of the time, that’s still a HUGE impact!

But YEAH, when you go out to eat, you can order things that don’t have GMOs (it is possible). Like you can ask for eggs cooked in REAL butter. Or bring your own salad dressing and get a salad (I know people who always do that). Or order rice and beans — but not corn tortillas. You get the idea.

I’m sure we’ll have lots of tips and ideas shared for how to eat out and do the no GMO challenge — it will all be on the No GMO Challenge blog.

And you can tell your friends “I’m doing the No GMO Challenge”. Spread the word!!!

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Dinneen - Eat Without Guilt April 17, 2009 at 5:38 PM

Glad you to be shedding light on a very important subject. You’re so right about educating — ourselves & others — about food issues.

When I lived in France, I was often asked by the French why we eat meat & other foods with hormones and also GMO’s. Always a tough one for me to answer. Why? I won’t get political, but I think we all know why. Corporations control so much of our food supply. But it should be the PEOPLE like is often the case in Europe.

I’ll be going to France in May, and think I will interview some people about. Just friends or people on the street. I guarantee they know more about GMO’s than the average American.

Thank you for educating and spreading the word!

Dinneen – Eat Without Guilt’s last blog post..UPDATE: One Hour That Could Help Change Your Life

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Kathy April 18, 2009 at 3:52 AM

I am already avoiding most of the time (except when eating out occasionally) ANYWAY I was wondering if anyone had any ideas on what to do with all the oils and other items lurking in the cupboards that need to be thrown away. I hate to donate them since they are not good for anyone. Any ideas

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Mary Ellen April 18, 2009 at 5:40 AM

I’m new to Nourishing Traditions and the subject of GMOs. Thank you for the video and the links. I’ve already begun the process of clearing our pantry of items with HFCS. And I avoid buying foods containing soy unless it’s organic. It will be a big (but needed) change for our family!

Mary Ellen’s last blog post..Mini-Makeover – Kitchen

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Rebecca from Michigan April 18, 2009 at 11:10 AM

We are getting there slowly. I have been trying to find the perfect mayo for my family that would taste like the store brand. So far no luck. My last one, I made follow NT recipe and the dejoin mustard was too much. I also used flaxseed oil because it needed to be used up. Has anyone used the Chaffin’s olive oil? Have you used it in a mayo recipe? Has anyone used the Chaffin’s fresh lemon and olive oil mayonnaise recipe? How does dry mustard taste compare to regular yellow mustard?

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cheeseslave April 18, 2009 at 11:24 AM

Rebecca -

I don’t use any mustard in my mayonnaise. I use Julia Child’s recipe for mayo and the Chaffin Family olive oil and it tastes great. I will post about this soon.

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cheeseslave April 18, 2009 at 11:25 AM

Kathy -

I threw my industrial oils (vegetable & canola oil & shortening) in the garbage.

If you know someone who makes his own biodiesel, vegetable oils work great for that.

Ann Marie

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cheeseslave April 18, 2009 at 11:27 AM

Dinneen -

I’m so jealous you are going to France! Please do ask people and post on your blog! That will be so interesting to read about.

Ann Marie

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Paula April 19, 2009 at 7:51 AM

My heart is breaking right now. He talks about how eosinophilis are elevated in those who eat GMO foods. My son’s levels were so high he almost died because they were causing him to throw up most every food. He was 16 months and only 16 pounds. No one knew what was wrong with him. The incidence of eosinophilic esophagitis, aka EE, (which is what he was finally diagnosed with) was never heard of 25 years ago. And now, now it is a rarity that is becoming more and more common (so hopefully people will not have to go through what we went through to find a diagnosis). The papers written on EE are becoming numerous. There is no known cause and no cure. I will say that after changing our diets, he is able to eat MANY more foods now (although he is limited to only about 14, and he sadly cannot have dairy or eggs). :( PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE warn others about GMO. After hearing this talk (I have NEVER heard ANYONE mention eosinophils in a speech before!) I have to wonder if my son could have been spared if I had known!

Paula’s last blog post..Current Web Readings

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cheeseslave April 19, 2009 at 1:02 PM

Paula -

I had never heard of this disease before. I’m so sorry for what you and your family have endured.

It’s disgusting what is being done to our food supply — and so sad that babies are suffering like this.

You and your family are in my prayers.

Ann Marie

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Julie April 27, 2009 at 3:58 AM

I don’t know if this has been asked and covered somewhere in this or other posts, but I heard that it is very hard to find corn that is not GMO because of the way corn pollinates. How do you stop the cross pollination of GMO corn to non GMO corn? It seems like just a little pollen in the wind would be all it would take to contaminate pure corn. I hope I am not just being paranoid here.

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Empress Celena May 15, 2009 at 8:01 AM

Seriously I have stumbled across this page twice and all I can say is you guys rock! I have been trying to be GMO free for about 10 years. It is hard. Every time you find gmo free product some corporate jerks buy it and pollute it. Or worse Monsanto corp decides they are not making enough money off of their gmo crops and sell their toxic waste gmo’s as organic. Yes they are doing it. They have been doing it with soy for a few years and are now trying to do it with a few other of their crappy products like corn, beet sugars, canola, and even safflower cannot be trusted because Canada is allowed to grow their GM Safflower plants here with diabetic medicine in it… There are several studies out on why GMO’s are bad for you. Italy, France, and a few other countries are putting out the truth and it is horrifying! Bacteria & Germs are being put into the plants, nasty things like genital warts? Ewww they have to add antibiotics, gold, and bovine growth hormones!!! They have proven it causes cancer, organ failure in every organ!!! It is very bad. I had to start 10 years ago as I am allergic and break out in hives from it… I don’t eat out often! LOL

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LeahS July 20, 2011 at 8:30 AM

I wish I had been around for this challenge! We still need more awareness about this. People are truly brainwashed.

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