The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Organic Consumers Association, Katherine Paul, 207.653.3090; or Zack Kaldveer, 510-938-2664

OCA Calls on Aurora Organic Dairy to End Membership in the Grocery Manufacturers Association

Aurora Organic Dairy is supporting efforts to defeat GMO labeling laws through its membership in the GMA


The Organic Consumers Association today called on Aurora Organic Dairy to immediately withdraw from the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), a trade association that has contributed more than $2.2 million to defeat I-522, a GMO labeling initiative on the November 5 ballot in Washington State.

"Aurora Organic Dairy claims it is committed to providing organic foods to its customers and fulfilling their desire to know how that food is made," said Ronnie Cummins, OCA's national director. "Yet the company has been indirectly funding campaigns to deny the citizens of California and Washington the right to know if their food has been genetically modified."

Earlier this month, Weil Lifestyle LLC, a company founded by health guru Dr. Andrew Weil, withdrew from the GMA after more than 25,000 consumers signed a petition circulated by the OCA. In the petition to Dr. Weil, consumers pointed out the hypocrisy of a company that tells customers that GMOs have not been proven safe, while at the same time supports the GMA, which works against consumers to kill state GMO labeling laws.

Dr. Weil responded by stating that because Weil Lifestyle's views on GMO labeling were not aligned with those of the GMA, the company had dropped its membership.

The GMA is being sued by a not-for-profit group calling itself Moms for Labeling for allegedly hiding its No on I-522 campaign donors in an effort to shield its members from bad publicity.

To date, only multinational pesticide giants Monsanto ($5.2 million) and Dupont ($3.42 million) have contributed more to defeat Washington's I-522 initiative than has the GMA.

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is an online and grassroots 501(c)3 nonprofit public interest organization, and the only organization in the U.S. focused exclusively on promoting the views and interests of the nation's estimated 50 million consumers of organically and socially responsibly produced food and other products. OCA educates and advocates on behalf of organic consumers, engages consumers in marketplace pressure campaigns, and works to advance sound food and farming policy through grassroots lobbying. We address crucial issues around food safety, industrial agriculture, genetic engineering, children's health, corporate accountability, Fair Trade, environmental sustainability, including pesticide use, and other food- and agriculture-related topics.