UPDATED: Junk Food Companies Dish up More Anti-GMO Labeling Dough | Civil Eats

UPDATED: Junk Food Companies Dish up More Anti-GMO Labeling Dough

With just one week left until Washington state voters decide on I-522, the ballot initiative to label genetically modified organisms (GMOs), money for the opposition continues to pour in. According to the state’s Public Disclosure Commission, the No on 522 campaign received an influx of $4.2 million last week from just two sources: The Grocery Manufacturer’s Association (GMA) and Dupont Pioneer, the seed and agri-chemical company.

This brings the current “No on 522” campaign war chest total to $21.9 million, the most well-endowed single-issue campaign in state history.

Dupont’s latest contribution is $460,000, bringing its donor monies to $3.87 million, just under the $5.3 million from Monsanto. But the generosity of the seed and chemical world pales in comparison to that of GMA, which ponied up an additional $3.7 million last week. Its lump contribution now stands at $11 million to fight GMO labeling.

As I reported earlier this month here, the GMA was forced to disclose the source of its massive contribution. Under the threat of a lawsuit by the Washington state attorney general, the GMA formed a political action committee, Grocery Manufacturers Association Against I-522, with a list of contributors and amounts. According to the state’s Public Disclosure Commission, 34 GMA member companies have contributed. They are:

PepsiCo, Inc.: $2,352,965

In addition to Pepsi soft drinks, the line of products include: Doritos, Tropicana orange juice, Gatorade, Lays potato chips, Ruffles, Aquafina bottled water, Lipton tea, Starbucks ready-to-drink beverages, Naked juice, and Sabra hummus.

Nestle USA, Inc.: $1,528,206

Brands include: Buitoni refrigerated pastas, California Pizza Kitchen, DiGiorno frozen pizza, Lean Cuisine, Dreyer’s ice cream, Edy’s ice cream, Haagen-Dazs ice cream, Nestea, Juicy Juice, Nescafe instant coffee, Carnation evaporated milk, Libby’s canned pumpkin, and Nestle toll house chips.

The Coca-Cola Company: $1,520,351

Brands include: Coca-Cola, Sprite, and Fanta soft drinks, Dasani bottled water, Smartwater, Odwalla juices, Honest Tea, and Minute Maid juices.

General Mills, Inc.: $869, 270

Brands include: Cheerios, Yoplait yogurt, Cascadian Farm organic frozen vegetables, Green Giant frozen vegetables, Muir Glen organic tomatoes, Progresso canned soup, Larabar, Nature Valley granola bars, Macaroni Grill chain restaurant, Hamburger Helper, Betty Crocker, and Gold Medal flour. (Of note, General Mills CEO Ken Powell has said he’s for a national GMO labeling requirement.)

ConAgra Foods: $828,251

Brands include: Hunts tomato sauce, Wesson oil, Swiss Miss instant cocoa mix, Gulden’s mustard, Peter Pan peanut butter, Alexia frozen foods, David sunflower seeds, Orville Redenbacher’s popcorn, and LaChoy soy sauce.

Campbell Soup Company: $384,888

In addition to its line of canned soups, brands include: Plum organics baby food, Prego spaghetti sauce, Pace salsa, Swanson chicken broth, V8 juices, and Pepperidge Farm.

The Hershey Company: $360,450

Chocolate bars, syrup, sweetened milk, cocoa powder, and seasonal confections.

The J.M. Smucker Company: $349,977

Products include: Jams, peanut butter, and ice cream toppings.

Kellogg Company: $322,049

In addition to its line of boxed cereals, products include: Toaster pastries and waffles, protein bars, and ready-made drinks.

Mondelez Global, LLC: $210,335

Cookie brands include: Chips Ahoy!, Oreo, Lu and Nilla. Cracker brands include: Wheat Thins, Ritz, Premium saltines and Cheese Nips. Chocolate brands include Green & Black’s, Toblerone, Cadbury. Trident and Dentyne chewing gum. Kraft Philadelphia cream cheese.

FlowersFoods, Inc.: $205,099

Several brands of sliced bread, including: Wonder, Sunbeam, and HomePride.

Abbott Nutrition: $185,025

Brands include Similac baby formula, Pedialyte hydration drink, Ensure nutrition drink, and ZonePerfect bars.

Pinnacle Foods Group, LLC: $175,425

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Brands include: Birds Eye frozen vegetables, Vlasic pickles, Wish-Bone dressing, Duncan Hines cake mixes, Log Cabin syrup.

Dean’s Foods Company: $174,552

Several brands of dairy products, including Berkeley Farms, Meadow Gold, Deans’s, Borden, and PET.

McCormick & Company, Inc.: $148,369

Line of herbs and spices, as well as Old Bay seasoning, Lawry’s seasoning, Zatarain’s boxed rice mixes, and Thai Kitchen products.

Land O’Lakes, Inc.: $144,878

Products include: Butter, eggs, Kozy Shack puddings.

Cargill, Inc.: $143,133

Brands include Truvia sweetener, Wilbur chocolate products, and food additives for manufacturers.

The Hillshire Brands Company: $282,774

Products include sausages, deli meats, and ham.

Bunge North America, Inc.: $137,896

Products include cooking oil for food service, fats for manufacturers, and retail margarines.

Bimbo Bakeries USA: $137,460

Brands include Sara Lee, Arnold, Stroehmann, Entenmann’s, and Thomas’ English muffins.

Del Monte Foods Company: $125,677

Products include canned fruit and vegetables, ketchup, fruit cups.

Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc.: $80,294

Products include fresh cranberries, juice, dried fruit, and canned cranberry sauce.

Hormel Foods Corporation: $76,803

Products include: Chili, deli meats, bacon, and the Dinty Moore brand of canned beef stew.

Bumble Bee Foods, LLC: $52,365

Products include: Canned tuna, salmon, and various types of seafood.

Welch Foods, Inc.: $41,892

Grape juice, jelly, soda, fruit snacks.

Shearer’s Foods, Inc.: $36,655

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Products include potato chips, pretzels, and other snack foods.

Rich Products Corporation: $34,910

Product line of non-dairy creamers, plus various brands including: Carvel ice cream cakes and Sea Pak shrimp.

Clement Pappas & Company, Inc.: $30,546

Private label sharing for juice, cranberry sauce, and enhanced water.

Sunny Delight Beverages Company: $30,546

Product line of shelf-stable juices.

Bush Brothers & Company: $23,564

Product line of canned beans.

Knouse Foods Cooperative, Inc.: $20,945

Brands include Musselmann’s applesauce and Lucky Leaf apple juice and apple products.

The Clorox Company: $17,454

Brands include Glad plastic bags, Brita water filters, and Burt’s Bees skin care products.

Bruce Foods Corporation: $4,363

Brands include Cajun Injector marinade, Louisiana hot sauce, and a product line of canned vegetables.

Moody Dunbar, Inc.: $2,618

Products include canned sweet potatoes, jarred pimentos, and peppers.

To date, the Yes on 522 campaign has raised $6.3 million from more than 13,000 donors. Thousands have given $50 or less.

[Update: This story has been updated to reflect an additional $540,000 check from Monsanto to the No on 522 campaign, bringing their total contribution to $5.3 million, and the total No on 522 coffers to more than $21.9 million.]

Photo: Shutterstock



Kim O'Donnel is a twenty-year veteran of the food world as a chef, cookbook author, journalist, and teacher. In addition to Civil Eats, she has dispensed culinary advice and covered food policy for numerous publications including the Washington Post and USA Today. The first Meatless Monday blogger on record, Kim is a known authority on the continuing trend of eating less meat for health and environmental reasons. Kim is a Staff Writer at LNP | LancasterOnline in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Read more >

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Join the conversation.

  1. TundraPup
    The large food conglomerates can throw all the money they want to fight labeling. It won't change how I feel about the chemical laden, genetically modified, processed slop they churn out. I don't want it and I never will.

    Their efforts to keep the American consumer in the dark about their food have only served to enrage me. Since I eat mainly organic, I was already avoiding all of their products - now I'm avoiding the products made by their crummy little "poser" organic subsidiaries (i.e. Kashi, Gardenburger, Silk, Burt's Bees, Bolthouse Farms, etc.).
  2. Elliott L Vinson Jr
    Why would any food supplier want to poison our food with GMO? There is a lot of backers of GMO that are going to benefit from this and that is why they are pushing the GMO and not labeling our food products. Anything that is genetically engineered in food needs to be tested at least 10 years before even allowing it to be put into place. The FDA is supposed to be a group that supposedly protect us but instead are recipients of kickbacks for allowing such as this to be placed on the open market without lengthy testing. NO MORE POISONING OF OUR FOOD WHATSOEVER.
  3. Captain Supreme
    As was the case in California, the GMO Mafia's advertising blitz is saved for the month or so before voting, and the GMO propaganda machine accelerates its misinformation campaign until Election Day.

    Corruption, bad "science," misinformation continue to rule the airwaves.

    But f the GMO Labeling fails this time, Washington, there will be a next time; it's only a matter of time. The American People will win against our adversaries: the GMO Mafia and its greenwashing "organic" allies.
  4. All those companies:::: doesn't leave much for us to eat does it!
  5. michael Davidson
    Once they pass The Trans Pacific Partnership any GMO Labeling will be Outlawed Worldwide, And GMO's will be Pushed on Member Countries TPP needs to be Defeated and Public should be made Aware Could Happen as Early as December.
  6. Ann
    The only real food comes from family-owned organic farms. That's the only food I eat as much as possible. I don't want to EVER eat GMO food.
    I am terrfied about what will happen to all the children that are being exposed to this GMO poison being sold everywhere.
  7. Truth and responsibility are trumped by money & media non-scrutiny!!!
  8. connie wold
    I worry about the kids'. They worry about the $$$.
  9. JB
    We can make a difference. Buy certified organic foods. Purchase NonGMO Project Certified foods. Share this Article. Be informed and learn as much as you can. Share your knowledge. Invest in your health and in your families' health. You have buying power. Use it wisely.
    "Evil is not an entity-it is merely the absence of good."
    Be the good!!
  10. JB
    Vote yes for GMO Labelling.
  11. AKM
    Be the change you want to see in the world…vote YES for GMO Labeling.

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