Nightly News   |  January 03, 2014

General Mills to Stop Using GMOs in Cheerios

Plain Cheerios, the classic cereal that has become a staple in so many pantries, will no longer include ingredients with genetically modified organisms. NBC’s Stephanie Gosk reports.

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>>> we are back tonight with a change being made to something of an american morning icon and a staple on high chairs everywhere. general mills will no longer use ingredients in cheerios that worried consume rs and prompted them to demand this change. we get the story from nbc's stephanie gosk.

>> cheerios has been the same forever.

>> reporter: until now, that is. general mills says the classic cereal is about to change. the food company will no longer use genetically modified ingredients or gmos . robin o'brien was part of an online campaign pressuring them to change.

>> we have a food system loaded with ingredients we have not necessarily chosen to eat.

>> reporter: gmos are foods that went through genetic engineering , often to improve production. they are deeply controversial. in the u.s. the fda regulates their use, but an estimated 85% of all corn produced in this country is still genetically modified . in a statement, general mills says there is a broad consensus that food containing gmos is safeful. we decided to move forward with this in response to consumer demand . in fact, their other cheerios flavors including honey nut aren't changing. it's easy to see how this is a business decision for cheerios as well. this is nature's path whole o's. they are clearly labeled nongmo.

>> you can cherry pick information saying this is not safe. but remember th the fda and the world health organization have both deemed gmo foods as safe.

>> reporter: general mills isn't the only company listening to the customer base . whole foods is requiring every supplier to label gmo products by 2018 . mexican fast food chain chipotle announced they will soon gmo-free. o'brien said the campaign is working.

>> to go back to the brands and restore the relationship, it means so much.

>> reporter: the maker of the little o's are following the classic motto -- the customer is always right. stephanie gosk, nbc news, new york.