2016-08-03 / World News

Lacking GMO labels, kosher foods go missing

A wide variety of kosher foods have disappeared from grocery shelves in Vermont after the state’s strict GMO labeling law went into effect July 1.

At least one supermarket, in the capital city of Burlington, explained that it could no longer offer certain kosher products because their manufacturers did not update their packaging to comply with the new law, the Burlington Free Press reported.

The law requires labels on products containing genetically engineered ingredients. With fewer than 20,000 Jews in Vermont, explained Rabbi Zalman Wilhelm, the Chabad rabbi at the University of Vermont, companies don’t have an incentive to repackage items sold in the state.

An official at Osem USA, the New Jersey-based division of the Israeli kosher giant, acknowledged that the Vermont market is too small to drive labeling decisions.

Still, some larger kosher manufacturers— including Osem, Manischewitz and Kedem—already offer a variety of products in compliance with the labeling law, either because they don’t contain GMOs or are already labeled to be sold in European markets where GMOs are banned. Still, the Price Chopper supermarket chain in Burlington said as many as 9,000 kosher products will no longer be carried. (JTA)

Return to top