More and more consumers are becoming concerned about the potential impact of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on the health and long term future of plants, the animals that eat and use them (including us humans) and ultimately on the future of our planet as we know it.
GMOs in beauty products
You may be used to looking for non-GMO food on the shelf, but did you know that it is also important to be aware of GMOs in your skin care and beauty products? The skin is the body’s largest organ and can absorb up to 60% of what is applied to its surface. Unfortunately this includes potentially harmful chemicals and pesticides that have been sprayed on GMO crops and then used in your cosmetics.
The non-GMO project states that ‘over 80% of all GMOs grown worldwide are engineered for herbicide tolerance. As a result, use of toxic herbicides like Roundup has increased 15 times since GMOs were introduced.’
What many people are unaware of is that it’s actually worse to put toxins on your skin than to eat them. This is because the liver breaks down harmful toxins in your food, but chemicals applied to your skin can pass directly into your bloodstream, bypassing your liver and accumulate in your organs and fatty tissue.
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How to avoid GMOs
There is a growing demand for non-GMO produce, however as labeling of GMOs is not required in the US, it is not always clear which products, ingredients or brands may contain GMOs.
Many of the ingredients used in everyday personal care products come from agricultural sources, so these may contain GMOs. One example is Lauric acid. This medium chain fatty acid is used as a moisturizer and can be derived from Coconut, but it is also found in Canola. Due to the increased demand for Lauric acid, some Canola has been modified to contain higher levels of it. This has made Lauric acid cheaper, but unfortunately this once totally natural ingredient is now often a GMO. Canola derived Lauric acid is commonly found in moisturizers, body lotions, face washes and body washes.
With consistently confusing and unclear labelling that forces consumers to fend for themselves, the best way to steer clear of GMOs is to look for certified organic products.
Choose ‘certified organic’ for peace of mind
It is a principle rule that organic certification guarantees that no GMO derived ingredient is used anywhere in the manufacturing or production of a product. Green People has organic certification from three leading certification bodies; consumers can therefore be confident that all certified organic cosmetics bought from Green People are made without any GMO-derived ingredients.
Supporters of organic agriculture have always banned any GMOs from being used in the production and processing on certified organic foods. More recently in Europe, organic standards have been developed specifically for cosmetics and personal care products by certification bodies including The Soil Association, Organic Food Federation (under their Non-Food Certification Company scheme) and EcoCert. These certification bodies have maintained their ban on GMO derived ingredients in all cosmetics that they certify.
Green People has organic certification from all three of these bodies and standards are strictly enforced with regular inspections, audits and complete traceability of all organic ingredients right back to the seed they were grown from and the land they were planted in. In addition, any ingredients such as emulsifiers, surfactants and preservatives that are on their lists of permitted non-organic ingredients must come from approved suppliers who must provide evidence to prove that these too are not derived from GMO material and are themselves free from GMOs.
Should I look for GMO-free?
Some companies use the phrase ‘GMO free’ to market their products and on their product packaging. This may be eye catching for many conscious consumers, however it is not reliable proof that a product is completely free from GMOs. This is because it is impossible to guarantee that an ingredient is completely GMO-free. Cross contamination can sometimes occur between non-GMO and GMO crops as seeds, pollen or other plant or soil matter may be transported by wind, wildlife or other factors that are outside of a farmer’s control.
‘GMO-free’ is therefore not an approved claim by any certification body and does not guarantee the absence of GMOs or that any external monitoring or checks have taken place on the product or the brand. It is therefore more important to look for certified organic products if you wish to avoid GMOs.
Green People works closely with its suppliers and growers, sourcing many ingredients directly from the source with complete traceability and dedication to using only the finest quality, natural and non-GMO ingredients available.
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Questions about GMOs in beauty products? Please get in touch by commenting below or emailing our friendly customer care team at firstname.lastname@example.org.