What’s the difference between the Non-GMO Project and USDA Certified Organic?

June 17 2014


In a nutshell, the Non-GMO Project goes the extra mile to ensure that all Non-GMO Project Verified foods have never been exposed to genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The description below runs through the possibility of cross contamination in crops and feed, and how the National Organic Program has great guidelines, but only the Non-GMO Project is testing to confirm there are no GMOs present.

Source Organic Whey Protein is proud to be the only Non-GMO Project Verified organic whey protein, and we have the great people at Rumiano Cheese Company and their local dairy farms to thank.

While the National Organic Program (NOP) identifies genetic modification as an excluded method, GMOs are not listed as a prohibited substance. This means that although GMO seeds are not supposed to be planted and GMO ingredients are not supposed to be used, no testing is required to show whether any GMO cross-pollination or contamination has occurred. These rules were established at a time when GMOs were in limited production and neither cross-pollination nor contamination was a significant risk. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. Genetically modified varieties now make up the majority of key commodity crops in North America such as corn, soy, and canola. As such, cross-pollination from GMO crops and GMO contamination of non-GMO seeds, ingredients, and products is a real risk, even for certified organic products. The good news is that the NOP has excellent guidelines for traceability and segregation, and the Non-GMO Project is designed to honor the work that certified organic companies are already doing, with the added measure of testing risk ingredients at critical control points.