Edward & Sons: Where We Stand
 
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Edward & Sons’ Trading Company, Inc. was born out of a commitment to create delicious natural foods featuring convenient preparation in step with busy, health-aware lifestyles. We travel the world to taste and evaluate regional foods, to source the finest ingredients, and to partner with the most reliable farmers, packers and food artisans to create our unique range of natural and organic specialties. We began in 1978 with instant Miso-Cup®, the natural vegetarian soup and seasoning. Featuring simple, wholesome, freeze-dried ingredients in a handy pocket-sized pouch, it required only the addition of hot water to create savory, satisfying soup-in-seconds™ just about anywhere. Miso-Cup has nourished people on the go for over three decades, and remains extremely popular today. It became the first of many Edward & Sons’ items that would exemplify our motto: “Convenience Without Compromise” ™.

We are a vegetarian company, which means that all foods throughout our family of brands contain no ingredients derived from meat, or fowl or fish. Most of our items are also suitable for vegans. Please refer to the section on “Vegetarianism” below for more details.

You will find our products marketed under an eclectic family of brands: Edward & Sons™, Premier Japan®, Let’s Do…Organic ®, Native Forest ®, The Wizard’s™, Road’s End Organics®, etc. Each brand represents different characteristics and product groupings. For example, Premier Japan® serves up full-bodied Asian flavors in popular bottled sauces such as Hoisin and Teriyaki. Ours are wheat-free, vegan and certified organic. Let’s Do...Organic® products encompass fun and fanciful organic specialties like Ice Cream Cones and Gummi Bears, and include packaged ingredients for the home baker such as Coconut Flakes and Tapioca Starch – all certified organic. Native Forest® brand features unique natural and organic specialties in cans or glass jars, ranging from Marinated Artichokes in Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, to rich and creamy Organic Coconut Milk, to plump and juicy Organic Mandarin Orange Segments packed in their own organic juice. All are sure to please the palate of the most discerning natural gourmet.

SPECIAL DIETS

At Edward & Sons we believe that everybody is different and every body has different needs, a point that is often overlooked by conventional food companies who cater solely to “mainstream” customers. We shun artificial ingredients and preservatives. We prefer simple, wholesome, minimally processed ingredients crafted by artisans to achieve great taste without artificial enhancements. Since any ingredient may present a problem for someone, we select each ingredient with care, ever mindful of our most sensitive customers. As such, you will find our products on the "approved" lists of many dietary associations, weight loss organizations, and food allergy groups. Edward & Sons’ items may be enjoyed by those whose diets are guided by religion or philosophy, such as Kosher observers, Seventh Day Adventists, and vegans, as well as those who employ diet as a tool to manage health issues, including celiac sprue, candida albicans, autism, ADHD, soy or lactose intolerance.

In matters of health, it is vital to understand that there is no substitute for the advice of a properly credentialed medical professional. Always check with your physician before incorporating any of our products into your special dietary regimen.

We have prepared a number of charts and lists to help those on special diets select appropriate items from our range of offerings. Please refer to the link "More Info -> Special Diets" on the menubar at the top of page, and refer back often when shopping our web site.

Some individuals who are sensitive to one ingredient, such as gluten, may also be sensitive to other ingredients, such as soy or fermented foods. Therefore, always read the full ingredient list for any packaged product before consuming it, and remember to consult with your physician if your safety depends upon your dietary selection.

Disclaimer: Life is fraught with risks, especially for those who have extreme food allergies. The human body is one of the most sensitive instruments on the planet.  It reacts to miniscule amounts of materials it can not tolerate, far smaller amounts than we are able to test for. As such, while we take great care to properly designate the dietary status of our foods on packaging and charts, this is intended only as a guideline to help consumers with dietary preferences to shop more easily. It is our best effort, but it is not a warranty that an offending material is positively absent from the reference food.

Remember that, when items are designated to be free-from a particular material, we mean that they are made without any ingredients that are generally considered to contain that material. For example, when we list an item as gluten-free, we are informing that it has been made without any ingredients that are generally considered to contain gluten, such as wheat, oats, barley, etc. While we randomly test the item to reconfirm the accuracy of our designation, it is important to note that such tests are always limited by the lowest level of the material the analysis is able to detect (in the case of gluten, we test to 5 parts per million). For more details, or if you have additional questions, please write to info@edwardandsons.com.

VEGETARIANISM

Vegetarianism is a philosophy and dietary choice that avoids the animal kingdom as a source of nourishment. The reasons people choose to be/become vegetarians are enormously varied, encompassing religious beliefs, ecological commitments, compassion towards animals and personal health.

People describing themselves as vegetarian come from all walks of life and can be found in every country of the world. Edward & Sons is a vegetarian company, which means all of our products are vegetarian. Although some self-described vegetarians will eat chicken or fish, Edward & Sons products never contain either of these. Vegans are vegetarians who do not eat any animal by-products such as milk, cheese or honey. For a complete list of animal ingredients that are not suitable in a vegan product, click here.

Many of Edward & Sons products are suitable for vegans, and we have developed a vegan icon that we have begun affixing to the front of the packaging of vegan-acceptable products. This "at-a-glance" icon can be important not only to vegans. Many kosher, lactose-intolerant and other consumers will also benefit from this tool. Since this is a new tool of ours, some vegan-acceptable Edward & Sons products do not yet sport this icon. Please be sure to read our ingredients panels to determine if any product meets your needs. Our pioneering use of a vegan icon has caught the attention of many manufacturers and retailers. As a consumer service, we are making our icon available to others who sign an agreement with us to abide by vegan guidelines. Expect to see the vegan icon showing up in many places throughout your favorite food store.

ORGANIC

The organic agriculture movement has exploded in global awareness and growth over the past decade. There are many reasons why we believe businesses and consumers would be wise to insist upon certified organic products. Organic farming is a sustainable system of agriculture that respects biodiversity, returns nourishment to the soil, conserves water resources and co-exists harmoniously with the rhythms of the natural world. To learn more, please click here for 10 good reasons to choose organic.

Certain factions within industry and government would like us to believe that residual pesticides and genetically modified DNA, commonly found in conventionally grown and processed foods, are perfectly safe to eat. We do not share that point of view. If consumers wish to avoid those substances, selecting organic foods is the surest way to do so.

For those who are curious about the nutritional and health benefits of organic foods, please see: http://www.organic-center.org/science.nutri.php. This is a service of The Organic Center (http://www.organic-center.org/) who we believe to be well suited to gather and vet the science behind the claims.

The US Department of Agriculture has established a standard for certified organic foods under its National Organic Program (NOP). Edward & Sons Trading Company, Inc. is third-party certified as an organic handler under this program by Quality Assurance International (QAI).

GLUTEN FREE
Our Gluten-Free criteria specify/criterion specifies that the factory use no ingredients known to contain gluten in our gluten-free recipes. Furthermore, we randomly test for the presence of gluten in finished products and find none detectable. Our tests are performed at an independent laboratory and the tests are sensitive to 5 ppm (5 parts per million) of gluten. Please understand that our tests cannot detect amounts of gluten that may be present in concentrations under 5 parts per million.
GENETICALLY ENGINEERED FOOD

According to the Institute for Responsible Technology, "Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) are the result of laboratory processes which artificially insert foreign genes into the DNA of food crops or animals. Those genes may come from bacteria, viruses, insects, animals or even humans. Although banned by food manufacturers in Europe and elsewhere, the FDA does not require any safety evaluations. Most Americans say they would not eat GMOs if labeled, but the U.S. does not require labeling." According to the Institute, " GMOs are not safe, but have been in the food supply since 1996 and are now present in the vast majority of processed foods in the US. "

Edward & Sons Trading Company, Inc. is alarmed over the proliferation of GMOs into the world’s food supply. While we have no certain knowledge that GMOs or GE food is harmful to consume, neither do we blindly accept the safety assurances of its supporters. Our evaluation of safety claims must take into account the vast sums of money the sponsors of GE food have to gain by it’s acceptance.

We are outraged that our FDA does not require consumer labeling of packaged products or produce that knowingly rely upon genetically engineered seeds or ingredients. We believe that consumers deserve to be able to make their own choices regarding the suitability of GE foods in their diets. This is especially important to those who are allergic to certain foods, because GE food from one food group will often contain the genetic material from another (potentially allergy causing) food group. It is the practice known as transgenics, where scientists splice genes from different species together (sometimes even combining a gene from an animal into a plant) that we find to be most disturbing, and most likely to have unintended consequences in the future.

We are suspicious of the speed with which GE food has swept through the world’s food supplies. We are alarmed by the threat to heritage varieties and other non-GE crops posed by unintended cross-pollination from GE crops. Edward & Sons seek careful, peer-reviewed scientific evaluation of the safety of each GE crop before regulators permit it to be grown outdoors. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists: “because of the USDA’s weak regulation of field tests of GE crops, contamination of food with unapproved varieties may be occurring on a large scale without anyone knowing about it. A 2005 report by the USDA’s inspector general found that weaknesses in USDA regulations, including those for pharma crops, increase the risk that unapproved GE varieties will escape into the environment and the food supply.”

Aside from introducing potential risk to the USA food supply, such contamination costs hundreds of millions of dollars to American exporters who service GE-wary European and Asian trading partners. Furthermore, since certain GE crops have been designed to be resistant to broad range herbicides, the resulting large-scale herbicide application on GE cropland endangers the biodiversity that would otherwise thrive on those lands.

As purveyors of consumer packaged groceries to the health aware marketplace, we instruct all our suppliers to disclose and replace any ingredients that they know to contain genetically engineered materials and we assist them in sourcing acceptable alternatives. We secure affidavits of genetic integrity on scores of ingredients, and we are proud participants in the Non-GMO Project (http://www.nongmoproject.org/), which is perhaps the most important and comprehensive food industry response to the threat of unlabeled GE food overwhelming our food supply. Native Forest® Organic Coconut Milk, both Classic and Light varieties, are our first items to become "Non-GMO Project Verified", soon to be joined by Let's Do...® Gluten Free Ice Cream Cones. In the months ahead, more and more of our items will become Non-GMO Project verified as part of this ongoing verification effort.

Edward & Sons Trading Company, Inc. is active in worldwide natural and organic food markets. We commonly source raw materials and finished products throughout the globe. It is noteworthy that many countries in Europe, South America & Asia have loudly denounced trade practices that might infiltrate their food supplies with genetically modified organisms. We think that the USA and Canada would be wise to similarly protect our food supplies.

The worldwide organic agricultural movement has made clear its repudiation of genetically engineered foods. Organic regulations prohibit the use of GMO seed, crops or input materials. We conclude that certified organic products provide consumers with a high degree of confidence that a product is free of genetically engineered ingredients. Non-GMO Project verification will enhance that confidence even further. Edward & Sons Trading Company, Inc. urges consumers to opt for organic choices when available, and to encourage producers to participate in the Non-GMO Project as well.

For more information on the important topic of genetically engineered food, we encourage you to visit these links:

The Institute for Responsible Technology:
http://www.responsibletechnology.org/GMFree/Home/index.cfm

The Union of Concerned Scientists:
http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_agriculture/science_and_impacts/impacts_genetic_engineering/impacts-of-genetic.html

The Non-GMO Project:
http://www.nongmoproject.org/consumers/about-gmos/

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