The Non-GMO Project
|Headquarters||Bellingham, Washington, United States|
|Megan Westgate, Executive Director|
Number of employees
The Non-GMO Project is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The organization began as an initiative of independent natural foods retailers in the U.S. and Canada, with the stated aim to provide non-GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) labeling for products produced in compliance with their Non-GMO Project Standard.
Founded in 2008, the Non-GMO Project's mission is "to preserve and build sources of non-GMO products, educate consumers, and provide verified non-GMO choices". It third party verification and labeling for non-GMO food and products. They also work with food manufacturers, distributors, growers, and seed suppliers to develop standards for detection of GMOs and for the reduction of contamination risk of the non-GMO food supply with GMOs. FoodChain Global Advisors, a part of Global ID Group, provides the technical capabilities.
Part of its mission is to "educate consumers and the food industry to help build awareness about GMOs and their impact on our health". It claims that everyone deserves an informed choice about whether or not to consume genetically modified organisms. Their primary strategy for providing consumers an informed choice and protecting a non-GMO food supply is to leverage the power of the marketplace.
Standard and seal
The Non-GMO Project maintains a consensus-based standard  outlines their system for ensuring best practices for avoiding GMOs. Methods such as segregation, traceability, risk assessment, sampling techniques, and quality control management are emphasized in the Standard.
The project’s Product Verification Program assesses ingredients, products, and manufacturing facilities to establish compliance with the standard. All major GMO risk ingredients must be tested for compliance with the Non-GMO Project Standard prior to use in a Non-GMO Project Verified Product. The process is managed through a web-based application and evaluation program developed for the project. The project's seal indicates compliance with the standards.
According to the Non-GMO Project, as of September 2013, Project Verified products exceeded $3.5 billion. This would be approximately 0.4% of the total food sales in the United States ($1.3 trillion in 2012). The Non-GMO Project reports 797 verification program enrollment inquiries in the second quarter of 2013 compared to 194 inquiries during the same period in 2012, representing more than a 300% increase.
In 2005, two natural food retailers formed the project, hoping to create a standardized definition of non-GMO. The Project worked with FoodChain Global Advisors which provided the scientific and technical expertise. In the spring of 2007, the projects board of directors  was expanded to include representatives from additional groups, and formed advisory boards for technical and policy issues.
- Board of Directors | The Non-GMO Project
- The Organic & Non-GMO Report. April 2007 The Organic and Non-GMO Report:The Non-GMO Project rises to forefront of natural food industry
- William Neuman for the Taipei Times. 30 Aug 2009 The Non-GMO Project aims to back up food makers’ claims that their products are largely free of biotech ingredients
- "Non-GMO Project: About". Retrieved 12 June 2013.
- "Q+A with Megan Westgate". Daily Camera.
- "Seeking Food Ingredients That Aren't Gene-Altered". New York Times. Retrieved 12 June 2013.
- Westgate, Megan. "Top 3 Things to Know About the Non-GMO Project". Retrieved 12 June 2013.
- "Global ID was engaged by the Non-GMO Project to design and administer a non-GMO verification program." Golden Triangle Newspapers  Archived June 14, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
- Non-GMO Project: Understanding Our Seal.,
- http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/food-expenditures.aspx. Missing or empty
- "Natural" food retailers to set non-biotech standard" Food Chemical News , .[dead link]
- The Non-GMO Project History
- Andrew Kimbrell, Your Right to Know: Genetic Engineering and the Secret Changes in Your Food (Earth Aware Editions, 2007). ISBN 1-932771-52-2