When you come together with friends and family around your Thanksgiving dinner table this week, will you have unwanted guests with you as well? We mean genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, which lurk -- unlabeled -- as main ingredients inside many common Thanksgiving foods.
The good news is that it is easy to keep GMOs out of your Thanksgiving by purchasing foods that are veriified non-GMO or organic. You can find many non-GMO and organic options at your local co-op or farmers market, at Whole Foods, and increasingly, at mainstream grocery stores. So, whether you are hosting a Thanksgiving meal, or bringing a dish to share, make sure to leave the GMOs out.
Our GMO Inside campaign features a helpful chart that will help you identify the GMOs in popular holiday foods, and non-GMO alternatives. Here are a few of the top Thanksgiving foods to be sure to serve GMO-free. Find even more on the GMO Inside chart:
1. Cranberry Sauce --
Conventional versions of this sweet Thanksgiving staple can be made with high-fructose corn syrup (almost always made with GMOs) or sugar from US sugar-beets (95 percent GMO in 2009). Look for organic versions from companies like Tree of Life, Grown Right, or other companies, or even better -- make your own! Cook down organic cranberries with water and a sweetener from a sustainable source, such as Fair Trade sugar from Wholesome Sweeteners, or local honey or syrup from your own local farmers' market.
2. Soup --
If you're short on time and need to go with a prepared soup option, avoid conventional soups like Campbell's (a corporate donor that helped defeat Prop 37, the GMO-labeling bill in California), and find an organic brand. The organic fall squashes at your local farmers' market will make a lovely soup as well, cooked down with organic herbs, garlic, and onions, and blended with organic rBGH-free milk, or a vegan milk made from organic soy, rice, or almonds.
3. Stuffing --
Though the brand-name "Stove Top" has somehow become almost synonymous with Thanksgiving stuffing, as with the cranberry sauce and soup, you can easily make your own. Start with organic bread (or cornmeal) and all organic vegetables and vegetable broth, and follow any of the recipes easily available online.
Find more ideas at our GMO Inside chart, including next steps for sharing your GMO-free Thanksgiving via social media to get the word out about GMOs. Be sure especially to avoid foods from companies that opposed Prop 37, like Campbell’s, Coke, General Mills, Kraft, Nestle, Pepsi, Hershey, Unilever (full list here).
Join us in turning away processed foods laden with GMOs and chemicals, and toward organic, local food. It helps people get healthier, and we move faster toward a sustainable food system. It's really simple: don't panic -- go organic!Here's to a healthy GMO-free Thanksgiving!