Genetically modified foods have long been known to be controversial for local communities and the environment; non-GMO organic foods are by now known to be a safe way to grow plants for the environment, yet many popular restaurant chains in the Santa Clarita area resist providing such methods for their food this way.
Besides Chipotle, that is.
Growing at a rapid rate much quicker than its competitors, Chipotle has initiated the process of providing non-GMO organic foods through environmentally sustainable methods and has kept solid in their company policy of doing so.
“We only use non-GMO based corn, and all of our other products besides our tortillas are non-GMO based,” says Sandra Charlotte, manager of a local Chipotle restaurant.
Charlotte added that the staff is currently working to change to non-GMO tortillas as well.
This is a major feat for the company, as 88 percent of the world’s corn supply is genetically engineered. The types of GMM (genetically modified maize) can range from corn that is grown to be resistant to certain pesticides to survive through the use of harsh chemicals, to corn that naturally breeds insecticides to ward off the crop-killing bugs.
The amount of pesticides that go into the earth to produce crops that produce the most yield, or profit turnover for the farmer, turn out to be very harmful for the soil and the earth it’s being used on, as well as the waste that results from the use in farming chemicals.
“Food with integrity is our commitment to finding the very best ingredients raised with the respect for the animals, the environment and the farmers,” Chipotle states on its website. “It means serving the very best sustainably raised food possible with an eye to great taste, great nutrition and great value.”
Santa Clarita is a relatively new area in comparison to the rest of Southern California and has since become a major hub for rich corporate chains’ restaurants and eateries. It is not well known how most of these chains obtain their food or how they affect the local environment in doing so, but Chipotle is one well-known player to be a bright star in the eco-friendly field amidst the numerous other businesses in the area.
It may not be a well-known fact as to how much the processes of obtaining the food generally affect the environment, especially on the scale that these big corporations work off of. But it certainly has become a wary topic on how genetically modified foods can be controversial both to our health and the environment in the long term.
“U.S. GMO crops show mix of benefits, concerns,” lays out the latest USDA report on the issue.