In sincere appreciation of words, food and nature;

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says it wants public comments because it received a petition from the Grocery Manufacturers Association asking for genetically engineered (GE) foods to be labeled “natural.”  What do you think the word  natural means?  I’d guess it’s not how the FDA currently defines it. If left up to grocery manufacturing the word could come to mean something vastly different from the common dictionary word.

I am posting my personal comments to them today here on my blog. If you have a comment of your own you would like to share with FDA regarding the word ‘natural’ submit them here.

 

To whom it may concern,

I am writing in regard to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Proposed Rule: Use of the Term ‘‘Natural’’ in the Labeling of Human Food Products; Request for Information and Comments.

Merriam-Webster publishes a hugely well regarded dictionary with the goal of indicating actual usage of words in the American English language.  The most recent edition defines the word natural thusly:

adjective – 1. existing in or caused by nature; not made or caused by humankind

The FDA, in defining the word ‘natural’ in a way that is vastly different from the commonly understood definition of the American word (as above defined), is certainly confusing the average consumer who I believe expects to be spoken to in common English when it comes to shopping for consumer items.   In short, any specialized definition of the word ‘natural’ in terms of food, drugs and cosmetics, should not stray from that which is agreed upon commonly as the primary American lingual definition.

To ensure consumers have a consistent and accurate understanding of “natural” labels that is not misleading, use of the label ‘natural’ to describe a food, drug or cosmetic product where the product contains elements that could not exist in nature without human intervention should be disallowed.

For example…

When a product:
contains colorants not existing in nature or caused by humankind,
contains chemical additives not existing in nature or caused by humankind,
contains pesticides not existing in nature or caused by humankind,
contains DNA caused by humankind.
contains additional ingredients that do not exist in nature.
is treated or processed in such a way that causes the product to contain elements not existing in nature.

When an animal:
is fed food containing elements not existing in nature.
contains DNA caused by humankind.
is treated or processed in such a way that causes the consumable animal product to contain elements not existing in nature.

Thank you for considering my thoughts on the subject.

In sincere appreciation of words, food and nature,

Jesse Moore
Seattle, WA

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