The beginning of 2015 saw the debut of a new nonprofit organization focused on exposing “what the food industry doesn’t want us to know.” The first major effort of the group, called U.S. Right to Know, is the publication of a report titled Seedy Business: What Big Food is Hiding with its Slick PR Campaign on GMOs.

The report documents the well-funded public relations and lobbying efforts that chemical and food companies have put forth to sway public opinion and policy in favor of genetically modified food. A major focus of the report, which runs over 60 pages, is the successful attempts of these interests to defeat the GMO labeling legislation that has come up for popular vote in several states recently. It is organized around 15 points of critique, with headings such as “#2: The FDA does not test whether GMOs are safe” and “#12: GMO science is for sale.” Included is an appendix which features data on how much individual agrichemical and food companies have spent on GMO-related campaigns.

U.S. Right to Know is run by Gary Ruskin, who served in 2012 as campaign manager for California Right to Know, the group that worked to pass the state’s failed ballot initiative (Proposition 37) for labeling genetically engineered food.

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, March 2015