Top UK chefs and restaurants campaign to get GM food off the menu
Top UK chefs and restaurateurs have joined forces with Greenpeace to launch an anti GM food logo for restaurants to use on their windows and menus.
The ‘Avoiding GM Food’ logo was launched by Priscilla and Antonio Carluccio (The Neal Street Restaurant), Rose Gray (River Café) and Fergus Henderson (St John restaurant) and Philip Howard, chef at The Square. Chefs and restaurants across the UK are being invited to join the campaign and advertise their opposition to GM food.
The Square is one of eighteen top restaurants involved in the launch. Others include The Savoy, The Lanesborough Hotel, the Sugar Club, Kensington Place, Bibendum and Le Manoir des Quatr’Saisons.
The Greenpeace logo is endorsed by The Guild of Food Writers, the Academy of Culinary Arts, Eurotoques and Slowfood.
Chef Fergus Henderson, added: “We do not want to cook GM food and believe that our clientele would prefer not to eat it. From today, every restaurant owned by chefs, like myself, will be able to use this logo to assure diners that we do not support GM food and that we will endeavour to ensure that the food we cook does not contain GM ingredients.”
Restaurants that carry the ‘Avoiding GM Food’ status have endorsed the following statement: “As food professionals we object to the introduction of genetically engineered foods into the food chain. This is imposing a genetic experiment on the public, which could have unpredictable and irreversible adverse consequences. We are deeply concerned that this is the wrong direction for food policy to take.”
Greenpeace campaigner, John Sauven, added: “If Blair’s Government will not respond to consumer demand, professionals from within the food industry will. The GM dynasty is crumbling as more and more chefs, restaurants and food outlets are avoiding GM foods. Chefs have always endeavoured to use the best quality ingredients available, but now it is more important than ever for them to promote healthy, organic produce as the only alternative to our increasingly industrialised food.”
Under the UK Government’s Food Labelling Regulations 1999, restaurants have to label foods that contain GM ingredients by law, but the regulations do not cover GM derivatives. Therefore, restaurant goers cannot be sure that they are not eating food that is free of GM derivatives or has been cooked in GM oil.
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