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Genetically Modified Wine Yeast

There has been a lot of controversy about genetically modified food. Now the University of British Columbia has developed a special modified yeast for wine.

According to an article on Decanter.com, “Canada approves ‘headache-free’ GM wine yeast” by Hazel Macrae, a yeast used for producing wine that is genetically modified has been approved in Canada.

In the article, Macare writes about the various benefits that this modified yeast has over other wine yeasts.  “It also produces fewer allergenic bioamines – chemicals in wine that produce off-flavours and that can trigger headaches and migranes.”

According to Macrae, the US and Canada do not require food producers to identify on labels the genetic modified ingredients used in products. The EU does require labels to list the presence of GM.

However, for those who suffer from headaches due to wine, perhaps it’s good if wines are labeled with the GM information so wine consumers who are susceptible to wine induced headaches may try wines that may not cause headaches or migraines.

What is your opinion about the use of genetically modified wine yeast? Do you want to know if the wine you are drinking is produced with genetically modified yeast?

Cheers Kathy

One Comment

  1. jordan.harris@tarara.com
    Posted February 23, 2011 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think the yeast needs to be labelled if it has already been found to not have any health hazards. I do however think it is a shame that so many things to do with wines are being created to modify something that can have such complexity and intrigue as a natural product. What ever happened to wine is made in the vineyard? Almost every winemaker on the planet says tha, but then items like this are developed which is clearly done from demand. It is the same as any commercial yeast, concentrate, color additive, flavor enhancing enzymes, etc. None of these are needed to make great wine, but they are available which is creating shelves full of correct, but boring wines.

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