Supermarket giant Safeway is converting its milk processing plants in both Portland and Seattle to producing milk from cows not treated with the genetically modified growth hormone rBGH, according to a report by Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility.
The Safeway plants produce fluid milk for all of Oregon, Southwest Washington and a few parts of northern California.
Safeway packages two brands of milk, Lucerne and Dari-Glen. According to Oregon PSR, Lucerne will be labeled rBGH-free starting in mid-February.
Safeway requires that dairy farmers supplying them with milk sign affidavits stating they won’t use rBGH.
Oregon PSR led a mailing campaign requesting that Safeway go rBGH-free.
Another factor was Starbucks’ decision to ask its suppliers to go rBGH-free. Safeway Lucerne is Starbucks’ Northwest supplier, and Starbucks has said that this action increases their rBGH-free commitment to 37% of their coffee shops nationwide.
Safeway is the 23rd largest dairy processor in the country, with 17 plants in the U.S. and three in Canada.
The only fluid milk processing plant in Oregon allowing the use of rBGH is Fred Meyer’s Portland plant.
© Copyright February 2007, The Organic & Non-GMO Report