Join the network Truefood the guide Take action, be involved News and events Questions and answers Resources and info

news + events

Leading Australian wine writer, Max Allen and Sam Statham from Rosnay Wines helped launch the guide
Leading Australian wine writer, Max Allen and Sam Statham from Rosnay Wines helped launch the guide
Aussie alcohol industry rejects GE

It's the latest addition to the guide, which helps consumers avoid buying alcoholic drinks that may contain genetically engineered (GR) ingredients. The latest edition of the guide is welcomed by the majority of Australia’s popular wine, beer and spirits makers.

Wine journalist, Max Allen, launched the guide, saying, “Genetic engineering of grape vines and yeasts, currently being researched, is not the answer to the challenges facing Australia’s wine industry. The Australian wine industry would be taking a huge risk by choosing to adopt GM technology. Ethical and environmental issues are becoming increasingly important for consumers.”

Beer brands Toohey’s, Hahn, Heineken, and James Squire, as well as spirits like Bacardi, are listed as “green” in the GE-free Alcoholic Drinks guide. This means they do not contain ingredients derived from GE crops. Australian wines by De Bortoli, Tyrrell’s and Yellowtail are free of GE ingredients. They're just some of the popular brands listed as GE-free.

Michelle Sheather, Greenpeace genetic engineering campaigner, said, “Just like the food industry, Australia’s wine and beer industries want to stay GE-free."

“State governments must do a better job of protecting these industries’ right to be GE-free, and ensure crops and harvests remain free of GE contamination," said Michelle. "And the federal government must improve our food labelling laws. Without proper labelling laws, the Truefood Guides are the only way to protect consumer choice and help shoppers choose GE-free brands.”

The online, searchable guide also provides information about alcoholic brands which may contain GE-derived ingredients. Absolut, Cascade, Cooper’s, Crown, Foster’s, VB and Strongbow are some of these “Red” listed brands.

Rob Glastonbury, spokesperson for De Bortoli Wines, said, “Aside from the unknowns in the use of GE products, the concept that the food chain can be tied up in patents or intellectual property rights is repugnant."

The Alcoholic Drinks Edition of the True Food Guide follows the Canola Edition, launched in November 2008, when Australia’s first GE canola was harvested in NSW and Victoria. The majority of the Australian food industry rejected GE canola, and were listed as “Green” in the guide.

The Australian food and alcoholic drinks industry, stand alongside farmers, chefs, scientists, nutritionists and leading groups supporting Greenpeace’s opposition to the use of GE ingredients in food and drinks in Australia.

Truefood Network