Good ’ol Betty Crocker — so many families grew up eating goodies from Betty Crocker mixes. Admit it. Even this farm mom keeps Betty Crocker products in the cabinet. It is mom’s secret weapon to whip up the brownies for a quick dessert or what about Bisquick for pancakes or as a casserole staple. Consumers, like myself, come to trust Betty Crocker and its mother company General Mills through the years for quality products.
So, when Betty Crocker responds to the consumer, defending GMOs (genetically modified organisms), coming across your Twitter feed, you stop and take notice.
What! A food company took a bold stand. Yes!
Too many times food companies push ahead to make policy restricting farming practices based on a small group of noisy consumers without actually talking to its supplier — the farmer. Obviously, Betty Crocker’s mother company General Mills did their homework and confidently set policy.
Here’s why they are so bold.
• Not afraid of technology: General Mills falls in the minority like Domino’s Pizza that respectively said to consumers, “we trust the farmer” by supporting technologies like biotech seeds. They firmly state they support genetically modified ingredients and confirm their safety. “Ensuring safe and effective food production, while conserving precious natural resources, is a longstanding commitment for General Mills. We believe biotechnology can help,” states General Mills.
• Correct labeling: In a world full of mass label confusion, it is refreshing for a food company to just label facts. As stated by the consumer, the label of Betty Crocker icing states “partially produced with genetic engineering.”
• Support choices: Furthermore, General Mills supports the freedom of choice for farmer and consumer. Although they are comfortable with genetically-modified ingredients in their products, the company still offers options by providing a smorgasbord of products made with GM to non-GMO to certified organic ingredients. Yes, that is the ticket. Providing choices and letting the consumer decide with their food dollar.
• Respectively defends its policy: What I think is even bolder is the way Betty Crocker respectively responded to the consumer’s tweet, airing concern over GMOs. Knowing a consumer voiced a concern, the company heard them but responded without a defensive nature, and no apologies.
While General Mills has deep roots in agriculture, it is still nice to see a food company that fully support its suppliers. Our customers’ concerns and preferences are important whether you are a farmer or a food company. However, it is a more solid business plan to slow down, research the consumer’s request and set educated policy governed by facts and science and not emotions.
Just think if more food companies stood behind the technologies on the farm, like genetically modified ingredients. How would it change the food conversation?