The NZ Food & Grocery Council supports the provisions of the Food Standards Code (Standard 1.5.2) with regard to genetic engineering.

To date, our members have not taken up GE ingredients in food because there has not been a consumer benefit worth launching onto New Zealand supermarket shelves. This is changing as mainstream consumers increasingly make their purchasing decisions based on a range of other factors, such as taste, price and brand.

Food manufacturers are the most in tune with consumer sentiment, and if there are significant and genuine benefits that consumers will value, then companies will support innovation.

It has been particularly interesting to observe consumer reactions to the GE heme in the Impossible Burger. It’s fair to assume that quite a few anti-GE supporters have been quick to overlook the GE component of this plant-based meat.

In 2018, FGC made a brief submission on the call for comment on GE by Food Standards Australia New Zealand. We said to not get ahead of reviews under way in Australia, and supported an expert panel on new breeding techniques to advise FSANZ in the interim.

That submission can be found in the Submissions section of this website, dated 19 April.