Non-GMO and Organic – What’s the Difference?

non-gmo-organic-chartThe term “Non-GMO Project Verified” indicates that a product has met the requirements of the Non-GMO Project Standard for GMO avoidance. “Certified Organic” has a different scope and focus, though it does prohibit the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in products.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s regulations for Certified Organic requires that farmers and processors demonstrate they are not using GMOs. The National Organic Program’s requirements help to prevent GMO contamination of organic foods through a process-based approach.

Many Products Carry Both Seals

The Non-GMO Project’s Standard builds upon these measures by requiring that all high GMO-risk ingredients are tested prior to use in products enrolled in its program, since a fundamental concept of the Standard is that ongoing testing is critical to identifying and eliminating GMO contamination. In today’s marketplace, roughly half of all Non-GMO Project Verified products carry both organic certification and Non-GMO Project verification.

The Non-GMO Project product verification program also verifies conventional foods. In fact, one of the Project’s key initiatives is to help build and protect a non-GMO food supply chain, going forward into the future.  Whether consumers prefer organic or conventional foods, or both, they stand to benefit from the transparency provided by both the Non-GMO Project’s Butterfly seal and the certified organic seal.

Does Non-GMO Project Verified mean a product is free of herbicides and pesticides?

The evaluation addressed by the Non-GMO Project Standard is exclusively for GMOs. Thus, the Product Verification Program does not address the use of herbicides or pesticides. However, choosing products that are both Certified Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified assures the avoidance of herbicides and pesticides, as well as GMOs.

How the Non-GMO Project product verification program works