The typical grocery store stocks almost 40,000 items on its shelves. Most of which contain some sort of label describing the product. But increasingly that label may not be giving you the whole truth about your food.

As food companies struggle to prop up their profits in an increasingly competitive marketplace, many are turning to deceptive food labeling to distinguish their products. And they’re doing it by playing upon food safety fears and misconceptions.

This includes claims like:

  • Gluten-free water! (which could never contain gluten in the first place)
  • GMO-free tomatoes! (all tomatoes are already GMO-free)
  • No high-fructose corn syrup peanut butter! (true for all brands)
  • GMO-free milk! (all milk is inherently GMO-free)

Nowhere is this fear-based labeling more rampant than with GMOs. Companies like TruMoo milk, which says that GMOs are safe on its website, while at the same time touting the absence of GMOs in its chocolate milk through on-product labels and fear-based commercials targeting parents and children. Or like Hunt’s canned tomatoes and Florida’s Natural orange juice, both of which prominently feature GMO-free labels, despite the fact that there are no GMO tomatoes or oranges on the market.

Any way you look at it, the intent is clear – it’s all about ratcheting up the fear to protect food companies’ bottom lines. And it has to stop.

You have a right to both truth AND transparency in food labeling. It’s time to peel back the label on food manufacturers’ trickery in the name of profits.

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Peel Back the Label is a campaign of America’s dairy farmers and their families. In the United States, 97 percent of dairy farms are family owned, and farmers are committed to producing quality milk for American families, protecting the environment and caring for their animals. Learn more about the work of America’s dairy farmers here.