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Food Giant Says it will phase out GMOs...
Taiwan to Label GMO Foods

(18 October - Cropchoice News) -- Health authorities in Taiwan announced yesterday that they will follow the lead of other Asian countries and require mandatory labelling of food with GMO ingredients. According to officials, the government will act quickly and develop the necessary regulations by the end of this year. Labels are to be required in 2001.

Chen Shu-kong, a senior Taiwanese health official, told Reuters "According to our information, there is no safety concern on genetically-altered foods. The labelling is to allow consumers the right to choose." The government has yet to decide on a labelling threshold - European officials are placing theirs at 1%, while Japan settled on 0.1%.

Taiwan is a major importer of US grains. In the case of corn, Taiwan imported over 4.5 million metric tons last year. Of this, 99.2% was bought from US farmers. Taiwanese officials estimate 30% of their supply is currently GMO.

The government's decision is in response to intense pressure and follows publication of a Gallup poll in which 74% of Taiwanese said they expected the government to require labels on GMO food.

According to Reuters, Uni-Food Enterprises, Tawan's largest food company, reacted to the news by promising to comply with the requirements and move toward using non-GMO ingredients. The company, with $2.6 billion in annual sales, makes animal feeds, dairy products, frozen foods, instant noodles, and soft drinks.

SOURCE: Reuters, USDA, Hoover's