Consumers Are More Educated About GMOs but Still Express Concern About Eating Foods Containing Them

Few are aware of new federal GMO labeling law

Chicago, December 14, 2016 — U.S. consumers are now more informed about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and the benefits of their use in producing food, but many still have concerns about them , finds The NPD Group, a leading global information company.  Over half of consumers in 2013 had little to no awareness of GMOs and that percentage has shrunk to a little over a third.  As awareness grows more consumers recognize that GMOs have benefits in producing better and more resilient crops, but for many of those aware the benefits don’t outweigh their worry, making GMOs the fastest growing food additive concern, according to new NPD Group research. 

TV news coverage and social media have informed consumers about GMOS and the benefits of their use, but the same channels have also fueled fears.  Of those consumers aware of and concerned about GMOs, their worries center around food safety and their interest in eating foods that are authentic and “real,” finds the NPD report entitled Navigating GMOs for Success, which explores how genetically modified foods or beverages impact grocery shopping and consumption habits.  The aware and concerned consumers tend to make healthy choices when grocery shopping and shop at specialty grocers, produce stores, and other grocery channels in addition to traditional grocery stores.

Although awareness of GMOs is increasing, very few consumers (11 percent) are aware that a federal GMO labeling law was passed in 2016. The law, which goes into effect in 2018, gives manufacturers the option of showing if their foods and beverages include genetically modified ingredients - either by words on the label, a symbol on the label, or an electronic code readable by a smartphone (QR code). Consumers, who are already relying on the packaging as a guide to determine if a product was made using GMOs, prefer on-package labeling versus using the QR code, reports NPD.

With increasing awareness and concern, consumers would benefit hearing from food manufacturers the reasons why they use GMOs and how their use benefits their customers,” says Darren Seifer, NPD Group food and beverage industry analyst. “They want to know about what happened to the product before it reached the shelf in areas such as country of origin, corporate responsibility, allergens, and other health information. Consumers today want to be informed and appreciate it when food companies make the effort to educate them. “


Related Press Releases

Korean Barbeque — K-BBQ — Is Spicing Up America’s Adventurous Taste Buds
Korean Barbeque — K-BBQ — Is Spicing Up America’s Adventurous Taste Buds

The Korean wave swept in with K-pop, K-beauty, K-drama, K-food and now Korean barbeque, K-BBQ, according to The NPD Group, a leading global information company.

U.S. Consumers Are Increasingly Eating and Preparing Their Meals At Home Often With The Help Of Foodservice
U.S. Consumers Are Increasingly Eating and Preparing Their Meals At Home Often With The Help Of Foodservice

The NPD Group shows that four out of five meals are prepared at home, and although the relationship of in-home prepared meals versus those sourced away-from-home has been stable for a few years, Americans still prepare more meals at home than they did a decade ago. This is not to say that they don’t look for shortcuts. Close to half of dinners purchased from a restaurant are consumed at home and a growing number of in-home meals are a blend of dishes prepared and items purchased ready-to-eat from a foodservice establishment.

Fast Casual Is Only U.S. Restaurant Channel to Increase Traffic Over Past Five Years
Fast Casual Is Only U.S. Restaurant Channel to Increase Traffic Over Past Five Years

Visits to fast casual quick service restaurants have grown 6 percent annually over the last five years, stemming in large part from store openings, but growth has slowed in recent quarters, reports The NPD Group, a leading global information company.

Plant-Based Proteins Are Harvesting Year-Over-Year Growth in Foodservice Market and Broader Appeal
Plant-Based Proteins Are Harvesting Year-Over-Year Growth in Foodservice Market and Broader Appeal

Plant-based proteins aren’t just for vegans anymore as U.S. consumers seek more protein in their diets and plant-based foods become more available and tastier. The higher demand for plant-based proteins is evidenced by growth in the foodservice market and consumption in-home, according to The NPD Group.


Press Contact

Kim McLynn
847-692-1781
kim.mclynn@npd.com

@npdfood

The NPD Group, Inc.
900 West Shore Road
Port Washington, NY 11050

Want more?

Complete this form to hear from NPD.

Newsletter

Subscribe and get key market trends and insights relevant to your industry each month.

We will not sell your information. View privacy notice.

Follow Us

© The NPD Group, Inc.