Genetically Modified Crops

Here we present Unilever’s position on genetically modified crops.

Genetic modification has been widely used in agriculture for more than 20 years to make food crops more resistant to pests, more tolerant to herbicides and more resilient against diseases.

A large proportion of some of the world’s major agricultural food commodities, such as soy, maize and rapeseed are now grown as GM crops. Other crops with significant GM-production are cotton and sugar beet.

Nevertheless, the use of GM technology in agriculture continues to be the subject of lively debate. Supporters point to the fact that GM crops have repeatedly been declared safe for use, that they are easier to manage, more cost-effective, and often more productive, which could play an important role in feeding the planet’s growing population.

Opponents express concerns about the impact of GM crop farming on biodiversity and the environment, and the leading position of a few seed companies. They also worry about the dependency of smallholder farmers on these seed companies, and their ability to compete in a global market.

Unilever’s commitment to safety

As one of the largest consumer goods companies in the world, Unilever’s priority is to provide consumers with safe products that meet all regulatory requirements and fulfil our high standards for quality.

Our commitment to safety and quality includes all of our food ingredients, whether produced from conventional crops or from GM crops authorised by regulatory bodies. We believe GM crops are as safe as their traditional counterparts and fully support regulatory control around GM technology and continued scientific research in the area.