Ben & Jerry’s has always been a progressive company. In addition to, until recently, heavily limiting executive pay, and publicly supporting the gay marriage equality movement, the Burlington, Vermont ice cream company has a social mission statement that includes “initiating innovative way to improve the quality of life locally, nationally, and internationally. Now, Ben & Jerry’s has jumped on the non-GMO bandwagon.
Ben & Jerry’s recently announced that it will source ingredients for all of its products from non-genetically modified sources by the end of 2013. The company currently sources 80% of its ingredients (by volume) in Canada and the U.S. from non-GMO sources. It claims that all of its products in Europe are already GMO-free.
Ben & Jerry’s has stated that its move to non-GMO ingredients was made to support smaller, sustainable, farming operations. The company is also supporting the movement for mandatory labeling of GMO foods. From a recent company blog post:
Now, we aren’t scientists, we make ice cream, but we do know there are questions about whether GMO technology is truly living up to its promise of making bigger and better food, or whether it’s just simply another way to further industrialize and consolidate our food and agriculture system. Because Ben & Jerry’s has a long history of supporting family owned farms, we’re concerned that increasing GMO crops comes at the expense of smaller farms, which we believe is a more sustainable kind of farming.