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Jennifer Chait

Help Stop "Natural" Label Consumers Fraud

By September 30, 2012

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Most die-hard organic consumers aren't huge fans of any "natural" labels - and with good reason. Natural is a term that means almost nothing. On top of which all most natural labels do is confuse consumers and take sales away from real organics. If you're not a fan of "natural" now there's something you can do to help.

This month, the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) launched a national alert on behalf of consumers asking the Natural Products Association (NPA) to amend its certification process for its NPA Natural Seal in order to exclude any and all genetically modified ingredients.

Ronnie Cummins, Executive Director of the OCA, notes, "The NPA advertises itself as working on behalf of consumers who want to purchase products that they believe are safe and authentically natural. Yet nowhere in its personal care products certification process does the NPA screen for genetically modified ingredients, and nowhere on these products is there a label that says 'may contain genetically modified ingredients'. This is an outright act of consumer fraud."

Currently, the NPA Natural Standard is based on, "Natural ingredients, safety, responsibility and sustainability. [and that] A product labeled 'natural' should be made up of only, or at least almost only, natural ingredients and be manufactured with appropriate processes to maintain ingredient purity." The NPA website has a list of approved ingredients approved up, but they do not differentiate between GMO and non-GMO ingredients.

Lastly, the NPA is publicly against Prop 37, the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, even though they claim to support each consumer's right to know. Lame.

The OCA was fighting these issues via an alert, but their emails to NPA leaders were being blocked by the NPA system, so the OCA has switched tactics, moving the discussion to NPA's Facebook and Linked In pages. If you support organics, truth in labeling and GMO labeling, why not take a minute to let the NPA know that natural should mean non-GMO and that Proposition 37 deserves their support.

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