Test conducted by Warwickshire
Trading Standards on 20 different food products revealed that five of the samples,
including cheeseburgers in a bun, pork sausages, and vegetarian bacon
contained genetically modified ingredients.
Trading Standards Officers visited shops, supermarkets, restaurants, fast food outlets
and garage forecourts during February and purchased a large range of foods including
burgers, crisps, tomato ketchup, cornflakes, and cakes. A screening test for genetically
modified ingredients revealed that five of the products, a microwaveable cheeseburger in a
bun, a pack of skinless pork sausages, a Soya dessert, a Soya concentrate, and a pack of
vegetarian bacon registered positive for GM ingredients.
None of the products tested were at the time of purchase required to be labelled
contains GM ingredients, but new legislation which came in to force on Friday
19 March now requires that all products which contain genetically modified maize or Soya,
must be labelled. Failure to do so could lead to prosecution and a fine of up to £5000.
Warwickshire Trading Standards departments will now be conducting further tests on
foods to ensure that companies comply with the law, and will be sharing their results with
four other county Trading Standards departments who each have access to a new,
confidential product samples database. The database, launched last October will allow all
the participating counties to benefit from each others research, and so avoid duplication.