Tropicana Wins Non-GMO Project Certification

A move in an effort to increase transparency for consumers

“A company with the visibility of PepsiCo is absolutely going to have to take an extra step to make sure consumers trust the label,” says Dyane Stanford, editor of Beverage Digest.

Beginning early next year, Tropicana Pure Premium orange juice and four of its brand siblings will carry the Non-GMO Project seal, according to The New York Times. “The Non-GMO Project is a non-profit organization committed to preserving and building sources of non-GMO products, educating consumers, and providing verified non-GMO choices,” according to the website.

Tropicana, owned by PepsiCo, joins other PepsiCo product lines such as Naked Juice, Smartfood, and Stacy’s Snacks with its Non-GMO Project certification. However, it is the largest PepsiCo brand to be given the certification thus far.

PepsiCo has been one of the biggest opponents of state legislation to impose labeling requirements. In 2013 and 2014 PepsiCo spent almost $9 million to oppose measures that would have imposed labeling in California, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington State, and over $11.45 million on lobbying against labeling at the federal level.

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Björn Bernemann, vice president and general manager for the Tropicana brand in North America, said, “Consumers today have a desire for transparency from brands, and that desire is only going to increase… Tropicana Pure Premium is non-G.M.O., and it always has been. Some consumers, however, are expressing a desire to get beyond what brands are actually telling them, and we felt having external verification would give our consumers assurance.”