Crystal Sugar Company CEO, David Berg, isn’t having huge success in the sugar business lately. Though sugar prices remain high, his company and others face ‘serious roadblocks’ due to the anti-GMO movement (aka demand for Non-GM) and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who wants to dispose of government assistance to sugar.
American Crystal Sugar Company has donated over $1.3 million to 221 members of Congress this election cycle, following $1.4 million spent on lobbying in 2013 in order to keep government money coming its way, and the money is BIG.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture arranges loans to sugar farmers and allows them to repay those loans with raw sugar if prices fall below 20.9 cents per pound. This subsidy program drives up prices for consumers and thus doubly subsidizes the industry. The USDA then sells this sugar at a steeply discounted price to ethanol producers.
Last year, the USDA spent $53.3 million on the program. Including the loans that could not be repaid, the government spent $171.5 million just to keep the sugar business ‘sweet’ on cash.
Some studies argue that if sugar prices were not subsidized, they would fall to almost a third of their current cost, saving Americans between $2.9 billion and $3.5 billion annually. 
Considering that obesity is an American epidemic, why are we subsidizing sugar at all?
Berg recently addressed Senator Cruz who is running for President on the republican ticket, telling him:
“We will defend the sugar program for a long, long time. Hopefully longer than your presidential race will last.”
Much of the industry that Berg is trying to protect also grows genetically modified (GM) sugar cane. The industry has been under biotech’s watchful eye for years now, knowing how profitable it can be.
In fact, the Cooperative Research Center (CRC) for Sugar Industry Innovation through Biotechnology was created in July 2003, seeking to make sugarcane production more profitable through cane improvement and industry diversification through the application of biotechnology, but consumers aren’t very keen on the idea of eating GM sugar. Multiple strains of GM sugarcane have been grown commercially since at least 2013.  
Berg is miffed that the anti-GM movement, along with Senator Cruz, are messing with his money train. In his recent speech, he said that Crystal Sugar could weather the decision by Hershey Co. to buy only non-GMO cane sugar, but he is worried that more companies will follow its lead. 
American Crystal Sugar Co. CEO David Berg speaks at a news conference during the cooperative’s annual meeting in Fargo, N.D. on Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015. Berg says sugar prices are better than a year ago but the company is facing roadblocks from the anti-genetically modified foods movement and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who wants to do away with government assistance to sugar. (AP Photo/Dave Kolpack)
“There are other companies that are making inquiries,” Berg said. “This is not something we are going to run out and go into a panic about. But it is something that we’ve certainly got our eyes on.”
Berg should be worried. Consumers have made it clear that they don’t want GM foods, and in the very least they want them labeled. Poll after poll says that 90% of Americans prefer to decide if they eat GM sugar, or any other genetically altered product.
If companies don’t make a change, they can look forward to profit losses as Americans increasingly demand more GM-free food.
 GMO Inside
 STL Today
27 thoughts on “Sugar Companies Face ‘Serious Roadblocks’ Due to Demand for NON-GMO”
Yeah it’s really going to hurt them, because they have depleted all of their corporations growing lands. They have to use chemicals or seriously reduce production for years while they revitalize their growing lands.
Would really like to know where Chrissy gets her info. While gmo sugar cane does exist as it has been planted in field trials NONE is commercially grown. Another poorly written article by her as usual.
Another idiotic attempt at bashing the messenger, what about GMO sugar beets there idiot?
Your distract is not even relatively intelligent, more along the lines of stupid for the stupid.
Since you obviously didn’t read the article let me point it out. “Much of the industry that Berg is trying to protect also grows genetically modified (GM) sugar cane.” If she would have mentioned sugar beets then I wouldn’t have made the comment. You should really think before opening your pie hole.
Guess you didn’t hear how the swiss bio beets grew beet feet LOL away from their Oregon leased sugar beet test plots back to their native banned GMO country because Oregon banned them with Organic Roots of Free GMO Zones Jackson County the whole County and Federal protections granted from his bench!!!
Ha Ha Ha
And how does that change the fact that there is no gmo sugar cane?
“Without public acceptance the development of transgenic canes would appear to be superfluous….. Unless biotechnology is able to bring tangible benefits, it would be very hard ,if not impossible to persuade consumers to accept GM food products whose safety is still a concern to many.”
quotes from Ag Bio Forum Volume 6 / Number 4 / Article 3
And I mentioned sugar beets and you commented????
My only comment was that Chrissy said gmo sugar cane was already being grown commercially, and I disagreed. Do you or do you not agree with her it is a simple yes or no.
I agree with Christina YES-You owe her more than one apology and I supported her against your remarks on her other excellent article about GMO research news last year
gmoinside.org reference > Jakarta Post May 20 2013
“The National Genetically Modified Product Biosafety Commission (KKHPRG)
recently approved the first genetically altered sugar cane crop.paving the way for development of transgenic sugarcane for commercial production.
Shows pictures of workers harvesting sugarcane at a plantation Tulungagung, Java. Developed by state plantation firm PT Perkebunan Nusantara ,The Indonesian Sugarcane Plantation Research Center(P3GI), and experts from the State University of Jember in East Java currently under a limited field testing”.
“We are proud to announce that the first biotech staple crop will be a drought resistant sugarcane. We expect to see the transgenic sugarcane planted by next year at the latest” informed from commission member.
SugarResearchAustralia.org / SRA Presentation April 30 2015
Status of GM Sugarcane page 12 of report
Company: PK Perkebunan
Trait(s)} Drought tolerance
Status: Commercial Production
Christina, reported, I’ll say she is passionate about her journalism, as you are about your fascism.
The story is therefore due to interpretation by the reader, and a lazy fascist will seek to destroy any at all costs by posting unintelligible responses directed at the fascist goals, corporate statehood.
Man your really a stupid idiotic moron.
You and her are both so passionate that you feel the need to lie just to try and make your weak point. Very sad but not surprising from a coward like yourself.
Yeah, really surprising, I would kick the crap out of your punk ass.
Your response will be the telling factor there pussy.
Yes you talk big hidden behind your web I’d. Lol, that is all you are is talk.
Are you talking again, hiding behind your hidden ip?
Not as boastfully or as foul mouthed as you are there mommies little boy.
Didn’t I read somewhere, you calling a person’s wife a slut and whore.
I’m the bad guy, uhh ok.
I’ll link it if you like.
Who is MLB?
You are mommies little boy and have lied about it the whole time. Just as all your other statements.
You can’t answer a simple question?
Stupid, attempt to read and understand the question.
Your intellectual processes are severely lacking, or suited to a mainstream agenda.
My reply to support Christina is valid with proof below. What’s your commercial GE/GMO misinforms presently?
Two problems, she says it is already being widely planted. You claim it will be planted next year, and NONE of the websites promoting gmos or sugarcane growers say it is even close. Your facts are as bad as Chrissy’s. The difference is Chrissy knows she is lying to everyone.
Your lies will never destroy my truth servant of deception. I have your gun threat post from an article post comment you made threatening me from a year ago and I am reporting you right now The flags up as well.
Never threatened anyone, but go right ahead. It doesn’t change the fact that there is no gmo sugar cane in production right now as Chrissy would like for you to believe, and IF it is going to be next year as you claim. It must be such a well kept secret that they aren’t even telling farmers about it. LOL, why lie? Is your argument that weak?
Go right ahead GMO R Nut Case just keep crackin up from a global level of GE/GMO scientific truth retaliation. Deception can only sneer with LOL,they say its the best medicine for defeat. What you assume are my lies/claims are NOT They have been provided with the links from world bio/GE/GMO transgenic sugar beet assessments You are the weakest of liars and yes you did threaten with guns in which another commentor posting in my defense destroyed you when you did.. This will serve as my last comment of truth against your reciprocal genetic ignorance .
You have already been proven to have lied on this subject and now the best you can come up with is vague accusations. And you wonder why the anti gmo movement never gets anywhere.
Since your a mental case posting here, there will be 0 intelligence in your responses.
I’m not lazy like you and am willing to face reality, not created within my imaginary world like yours.
Sugar comes from many sources, though the story might simplify it, sugar cane, I’m able to formulate my own opinions and correlations, your fascism and totalitarian views of society haven’t yet been totally implemented, I still have rights idiot.
Read the Constitution, not constitution, and the Bill of Rights.
Get back to me when your fascist views and mental facilities make adjustments towards the real world, ie pull your head out of your butt.