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GE Free Markets Coalition
Launches Nationwide Supermarket
Campaign

Consumers and Activists Continue Grocery Store Protests with
Demonstration at Safeway

A San Francisco Safeway grocery store was targeted on March 14th as part
of a national campaign to rid grocery stores of genetically engineered
(GE) foods. Greenpeace and the Organic Consumers Association, as members
of the GE-Free Markets Coalition, are demanding that Safeway follow the
lead of stores such as Trader Joe's and remove untested GE ingredients
from its store brand products.

The protest marked the third straight day of such actions from the
GE-Free Markets Coalition. In addition to the protest in San Francisco,
Coalition members GE-Free LA and NW Resistance Against Genetic
Engineering also demonstrated at Safeway stores on the West Coast.

The activists conveyed their message with a banner reading, "The
Un-Safeway: Stop Genetically Engineered Food." Greenpeace activists held
signs encouraging motorists to tune into Greenpeace radio, 88.1, for
more information about the action. The group says it will continue to
pressure the grocery chain at stores around the country until it commits
to going GE-free.

Genetic testing requested by the coalition found that two Safeway brand
products contained genetically engineered ingredients. Those products
testing positive for GE included Safeway Select brand Soy Infant Formula
and Safeway brand Buttered Popcorn Cakes.

"The company tells its customers that 'Safeway Cares,'" says Heather
Whitehead, Greenpeace genetic engineering campaigner. "Now it's time for
Safeway to walk the walk and take risky GE-foods off its shelves." Two
recent national polls have shown that upwards of 90 percent of U.S.
consumers want GE foods labeled so that they can avoid them. "Safeway
has the opportunity to lead the nation by giving its customers what they
want - GE-free food," added Whitehead. "Other stores have done it,
Safeway can too."

Safeway is the third largest food retailer in the U.S. with 25 percent
of its products carrying the store brand. As such, it has substantial
control over its suppliers. Safeway owns Vons, Pavilions, Carrs,
Dominick's, Randalls, Tom Thumb and Genuardi's stores, all leading
supermarkets in their regional markets.

Last November, pressure from the coalition caused the grocery chain
Trader Joe's to stop using genetically engineered foods in its private
label products. In announcing its plan to go GE-free, Trader Joe's said
its policy change was the result of "talking with our customers," and
finding that "it is clear . that if given the opportunity, the majority
of our customers would prefer to have products made without genetically
engineered ingredients."

The GE-Free Markets Coalition kicked off its 2002 Supermarket Campaign
with a demonstration at Star Market near Boston.

In addition to the protest in Boston, consumers and activists
demonstrated at Shaw's and Star Markets in Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode
Island and Maine. Students with MASSPIRG also handed out flyers and
postcards calling on Shaw's to go GE- free.

The GE-Free Markets Coalition is advising shoppers to:

***Let Shaw's/Star know they don't want genetic experiments in their
food;
***buy organic and whole, unprocessed foods
***become informed shoppers by reading labels and identifying foods that
are commonly engineered, like corn, soy, and canola or cotton seed oil;


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