Text of in-store leaflet on genetically
Genetically modified soya is now being used
in greater quantities in UK foods. As a result, Sainbury's is
joining all other UK food retailers and food manufacturers in
labelling foods that contain genetically modified soyaeven
though we are not required by law to do so.
It will state clearly on the packaging if any
of our own label products contain ingredients derived from genetically
modified soya. This information will be near the ingredients'
list and state "Produced from genetically modified soya beans".
This will give you the information you need to be able to choose
whether or not to buy the product. If this information does not
appear on the pack, you can be sure the soya used in the product
is non-genetically modified.
Sainsbury's has always said that foods that
are genetically modified, or contain genetically modified ingredients,
should be clearly labelled to give customers choice.
We have always labelled our genetically modified
tomato puree, which we have been selling successfully since January
1996. We were unable to label products that contained genetically
modified soya at first. This was because the growers and food
manufacturers were not separating genetically modified soya from
Sainsbury's has now made sure that it can trace
the source of all soya ingredients used in our own label products.
This information has enabled us to label with confidence.
You will, however, find very few own label products
that contain genetically modified soya in Sainsbury's. We estimate
that genetically modified soya is used in as little as 30 products.
Sainsbury's has fewer products containing genetically modified
soya than many other food retailers because we have asked our
own label suppliers to source non genetically modified soya for
as many of our leading lines such as bakery goods, biscuits, cakes
and confectionery. No Sainsbury's baby food contains genetically
We made this request so you could have the widest
possible choice of food should you wish to avoid genetically modified
We will continue to keep you informed about
developments in genetically modified foods. Sainsbury's believes
that each genetically modified whole food or commodity crop should
be assessed on its merits.
Soya beans have been used to produce food for
many years. They are used in bread and biscuits; sweets; some
margarine; baby food and special diet foods. Ingredients made
from soya beanssoya flour, soya meal, soya protein and
soya lecithinare valuable and versatile sources of protein
By law, all food must be safe to eat. The genetically
modified Soya bean was assessed by an independent team of UK scientists
and specialists, designated by the Government who agreed that
the genetically modified Soya bean is as safe to eat as the conventional
bean. In addition, regulatory authorities in Europe, Canada and
the US also approved the genetically modified bean for use.
Genetically modified Soya plants are produced
to be tolerant to an all-purpose weed killer. The weed killer
can be sprayed to control all weeds without affecting the Soya
plant crop and it also breaks down quickly in the soil.
Association welcomes the opportunity to submit written
evidence to the enquiry being conducted by Sub-Committee D into
genetic modification on agriculture, especially in relation to
its regulation by theAs an Industry we are not opposed to genetic
modification, properly regulated. However, we do accept the right
of consumers to choose whether or not they wish to purchase products
made form GM raw materials. Accordingly, we accept the consumers'
call for products containing GM materials to be labelled to that
effect. Such labelling must relate only to what is in the finished
product. We see no requirement for products which do not contain
any GM materials to be labelled and we would oppose labelling
for products which, although made from GM raw materials, have
no such materials or residues thereof in the finished product.
4. There is scientific evidence which indicates
that neither protein nor DNA resulting from GM cereals used in
the distillation process of Scotch Whisky "carry over"
into the new make spirit.
5. However, we are less sure of the position
regarding caramel made from GM raw materials. As caramel may be
used to standardise the colour of Scotch Whisky released to the
market for human consumption, our members are concerned that unless
there is segregation between GM and non-GM raw materials, it will
not be possible for them to be able to guarantee that their Scotch
Whisky is entirely free of GM material. Accordingly, we encourage
the Sub-Committee to conclude that there must be segregation between
GM and non-GM raw materials so that end users may be able to give
such a guarantee.
6. Segregation will also enable end users to
make a choice between using GM raw materials or not.
7. We shall await the outcome of the Sub-Committee's
enquiry with much interest.