Forum: Genetically Modified
- Did you know: ~90% of US/UK medium/hard cheese is GMO-soy rennet?
- Interesting post
I check around for rennet and found this site:
Here are some snippets:
Chymosin (also known as rennin) is the primary active ingredient in rennet. Rennet or
chymosin is essential to the manufacture of firm cheeses. Chymosin splits the casein protein of milk at specific point and thereby effects clotting: casein clumps together to form curd and separates from the watery whey. Subsequently, the ripening process of cheese may begin.
The production of chymosin with the aid of genetically modified organisms is widespread. A large part of global cheese production is conducted using GM chymosin.
Procedure: The chymosin gene isolated from calf stomachs is transferred to appropriate producer organisms such as bacteria, moulds or yeasts. These are allowed to multiply and are cultivated in a closed system (fermenter), in which they release chymosin into the culture liquid. This chymosin is separated and is cleaned of possible impurities and of leftovers of the GM microorganisms.
Products: A variety of chymosin products are on the market and include Chy-Max (made with Aspergillus niger) or Maxiren (Kluyveromyces lactis; yeasts). A production site for Chy-Max is in Nienburg on the Weser. Chymosin produced with GM microorganisms consists of 80 to 90 per cent active ingredient and is thereby significantly purer as natural rennet, which contains only between four and eight per cent active chymosin.
Application: According to estimates, between 80 and 90 per cent of cheese in the USA and Great Britain is manufactured using chymosin produced using gene technology. Exact statistics on German usage are unavailable. It is to be assumed that such chymosin is in use.
Labelling: Neither rennet nor chymosin is regarded in Germany as a food ingredient and is therefore not declared in the list of ingredients. Labelling of cheese in regard to gene technology and the use of chymosin is not required.
New EU regulations take effect in 2013. Since chymosin remains in the cheese it has to be declared as an ingredient on the list of ingredients. The use of genetically modified organisms in the production process is not explicitly labelled on the product.
How much GM byproducts are people consuming from cheeses then?
Surprisingly, and I hope this is not lie, I found some RAW Amish cheese at Whole Foods that has a light color. I wonder if it's the real deal. Expensive enough. It is a small block and the ONLY one that doesn't look pasteurized.
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- Re: Did you know: ~90% of US/UK medium/hard cheese is GMO-soy rennet?