A natural foods co-op in Durango, Colorado, has reportedly rolled out a new labeling initiative for products free of genetically modified organisms (GMO) to recognize “October’s designation as national non-GMO month.” According to an October 19, 2011, article in The Durango Herald, the local co-op displays two labels on shelves to indicate products certified by the Non-GMO Project and those verified by manufacturers as containing no GMOs.

“Normally, consumers would have to do the research or call manufacturers themselves if they wanted that information,” the store’s marketing manager told the Herald while noting that the co-op itself is also a member the National Cooperative Growers Association, Just Label It Campaign and Non-GMO Project. As another natural grocer apparently elaborated, “Without GMO labeling, the only way to know if products contain genetically engineered foods is if they are made with 100 percent USDA-certified organic ingredients.”

The manager of a third area store, however, cautioned that such labeling programs are still expensive despite gaining momentum. “It’s a huge job for us to chase down where corn came from and how it is handled in every bag of chips and every box of cereal. We are letting the bigger guys in the industry take it on before we step into it,” she said.