(NaturalNews) You may have heard rumors recently that all kosher-certified foods -- that is, foods that meet strict Jewish dietary standards -- are now free of genetically-modified organisms (GMOs). Unfortunately, these rumors are not true. But there is one kosher certification company in particular, Natural Food Certifiers (NFC), that recently announced it will no longer certify as kosher any foods or food brands that contain or use GMOs.
In a recent press release, NFC, which also offers organic, gluten-free, non-GMO, and vegan certifications, announced that it will no longer accept any applications from manufacturers seeking kosher certification for products that contain GMOs. And all existing certified kosher foods under NFC's "Apple K" program will have one year to change their ingredients and remove all GMOs, or else lose their certification.
"By granting certification only to those products which are GMO-free, the Apple K is adhering to the principle of 'Begin Naturally. Stay That Way,'" says Rabbi Reuven Flamer, Founder and Director of NFC. "NFC was very proud to introduce the first 'Natural Only' kosher supervision. Rejecting products that contain GMOs for kosher certification is a logical addition to our kosher supervision, given the variety of certification and verification programs which NFC offers."
While kosher food law does not specifically prohibit GMOs, probably because GMOs did not exist when it was first established, Rabbi Flamer says the modern food additives are still unnatural. And in the interest of guarding public health, as well as ensuring that all NFC-certified products are trusted, safe and nutritious, Rabbi Flamer believes it is only right that GMOs be removed from all Apple K kosher-certified products.
"Recent studies show that GMOs may cause various kinds of health problems from digestive disturbances to food allergies, and that GMOs require more herbicides, which is really the opposite reason why GMOs were touted to be so environmentally helpful in the first place," he adds. "For all of the many reasons that GMOs raise a red flag, consumers simply don't want them in their foods, and our clients want to accommodate their customers."
Rabbi Flamer is referring, of course, to studies such as the Gilles-Eric Seralini paper on GMO corn, which found that rats fed a lifetime of Bt corn treated with Roundup (glyphosate) developed serious liver and kidney damage, not to mention horrifying tumors all over their bodies. Other recent studies have linked GMO consumption to gastrointestinal damage and behavioral problems.
You can see an image of the Apple K kosher-certified logo, in order to look for it on product labels, by visiting: http://nfccertification.info
Natural Food Certifiers also introduces non-GMO product verification program known as 'GMO Guard'
To go along with its new Apple K kosher-certified standard, NFC has also introduced a new non-GMO verification program known as "GMO Guard" that it says will help make it even easier for consumers to avoid GMOs while shopping. Unveiled back in March, the program accompanies the more well-known Non-GMO Project in certifying food products that are determined to be free of GMOs, adding momentum to a much larger movement to rid the food supply of GMOs altogether.
"We ourselves operate under full transparency," says Rabbi Flamer about his organization's activities. "GMO Guard offers reliable verification that our clients can trust. We're committed to ensuring the personal choice for consumers in food purchases today, which demands the proper labeling for no GMO usage on products."
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