Green America and American Sustainable Business Council Call For Clear and Commonsense Definition of “Natural” Foods

vegetables display in food market.
vegetables display in food market.
Organizations Representing Green Consumers and Businesses Call for Food and Drug Administration To Clearly Define “Natural” Foods

WASHINGTON, DC – May 10, 2016 – Green America, a non-profit organization representing over 400,000 consumers and businesses nationwide, submitted comment to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to clearly define the use of the term “natural” and regulate its usage on food labels to ensure that consumers are provided with clear and accurate food labels. Green America’s comment, available here, was submitted in response to the FDA’s request for information and comments on the use of the term “natural” in the labeling of food products.

Green America’s comment highlighted the concerns over the current unregulated use of the term “natural”. Currently, many products that contain ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs) can be labeled as “natural” foods.  Without regulations or labeling requirements, these “natural” labels confuse consumers and can be extremely misleading. 

“A clear and common sense definition of the term “natural” on food labels is essential to ensure consumers can make informed choices about their food,” said Michael Stein, food campaign manager at Green America. “Currently, without regulations the term “natural” can be placed on almost any food product and actually means very little.”

In addition to submitting its own comment to the FDA, Green America and American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) engaged with thousands of business members to submit their own comments to the FDA regarding the use of the term “natural”.

“This is an important issue for businesses as well,” said Richard Eidlin, vice president of policy and programs at ASBC, “producers of truly natural foods need to be able to distinguish themselves in a highly competitive marketplace. Clearly defining the term “natural” is good for consumers and for responsible businesses.”

The FDA is responsible for assuring that foods sold in the United States are safe and properly labeled.  Therefore, Green America urges the FDA to clearly define the term ‘natural’ for use on food labels.  By doing so, the FDA can give consumers confidence when making purchasing decisions and help truly natural food producers distinguish themselves.  


Green America is the nation’s leading green economy organization. Founded in 1982, Green America provides the economic strategies, organizing power and practical tools for businesses and individuals to solve today's social and environmental problems.

Green America’s Green Business Network (GBN) represents over 3,000 businesses nationwide and is home to both rising and established social and eco enterprises. The Network provides the tools, information, and consumer base to help businesses thrive in today’s competitive green marketplace. 

The American Sustainable Business Council advocates for policy change and informs business owners and the public about the need and opportunities for building a vibrant, sustainable economy. Through its national member network it represents more than 200,000 businesses and more than 325,000 entrepreneurs, executives, managers and investors. 



Please contact Todd Larsen by email 
or by phone at 202-872-5307.