Whole Foods Market Whole has announced that by 2018, all products in its US and Canada stores need to be labelled if they contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Whole Foods Market co-CEO Walter Robb said the company is increasing its support of certified organic agriculture, and is working with its supplier partners to grow its non-GMO supply chain.
"The prevalence of GMOs in the US paired with nonexistent mandatory labeling makes it very difficult for retailers to source non-GMO options and for consumers to choose non-GMO products," Robb said.
Whole Foods Market, which sells 3,300 Non-GMO Project-verified products at present from 250 brands, is set to expand the effort by joining forces with suppliers in all categories as they shift to ingredients from non-GMO sources, or label products containing GMOs clearly.
"We're responding to our customers, who have consistently asked us for GMO labeling and we are doing so by focusing on where we have control: in our own stores," Robb added.
Whole Foods, which is encouraged by many labelling initiatives that are compulsory, proposes to move forward with its new GMO transparency plan.
The initiative will enable the company to provide better transparency about the products it sells to its customers.
The supermarket chain has been associating with many of its supplier partners for several years to source products without GMO ingredients.
Whole Foods, which began putting its 365 Everyday Value line through Non-GMO Project verification in 2009, encouraged its grocery supplier partners to follow suit.
The retailer has seven stores in the UK, which already require labelling for all foods or feeds that intentionally contain or are produced from GMO ingredients.
Image: Whole Foods' labelling initiative will enable it to provide better transparency about the products it sells to its customersPhoto: Whole Foods Market.