Melania Trump Bans Monsanto Products from the White House?

Reports that the first lady ordered Monsanto products removed from the White House after reading about genetically modified foods are fake news.

  • Published 4 June 2017
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Claim

First Lady Melania Trump banned all Monsanto products from the White House after reading about the dangers of genetically modified foods.

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Origin

On 30 May 2017, web sites began posting reports stating that First Lady Melania Trump had banned all food products containing ingredients associated with the multinational agrochemical company Monsanto:

First Lady Melania Trump has banned Monsanto products from the White House after learning of the health effects associated with consuming genetically modified (GM) corn, according to reports.

While public debate rages about the safety of genetically modified food, Melania Trump says that as far as she is concerned, GM products are best avoided.

“Barron’s health has improved out of sight since we started eating organic, non genetically modified food,” the First Lady said.

After researching exactly where Monsanto’s genetically modified corn appeared in her family’s diet and becoming concerned about potential negative health effects, Melania Trump said she was “amazed at the place this company has in the food chain“.

These claims were fictional, however. Although the Monsanto Company does, in fact, produce genetically modified crop seeds, there is no truth to the allegation that Melania Trump has banned “Monsanto-tainted products” from the White House. (In fact, the First Lady has been the subject of much controversy because she and her son Barron haven’t even been living at the White House, but have instead been residing at the Trump Tower in New York.)

These fabricated reports about Melania Trump and Monsanto originated with YourNewsWire, a fake news web site who plagiarized the quotes falsely attributed to the First Lady from a six-year-old Yes! Magazine article by April Dávila:

Yes! Magazine (2010):

With the help of sustainable food advocate Cassie Gruenstein, I got in touch with dozens of health food stores and manufacturers to ask where they sourced their products. I spent hours at the farmers’ market asking farmers what seed companies they bought from, googling on my iPhone before making purchases. It took several weeks, but I slowly built a somewhat normal Monsanto-free existence.

I began to research where exactly Monsanto corn appeared in my family’s diet. With a little online sleuthing, I learned that in addition to producing the genetically modified corn, Monsanto produces several other genetically modified crops such as soy, sugar beets, and cotton. Many of these crops form the foundation of our diets: 70 to 80 percent of American processed foods contain genetically engineered ingredients, according to the Grocery Manufacturers of America.


YourNewsWire (2017):

“I have a friend who is a sustainable food advocate, and I got in touch with dozens of health food stories and manufacturers to ask where they sourced their products,” the First Lady said. “I spent a lot of time at farmers’ markets asking farmers what seed companies they buy from, googling on my phone before making purchases.” “It took a few months but I finally managed to get Monsanto out of my life completely.“

After researching exactly where Monsanto’s genetically modified corn appeared in her family’s diet and becoming concerned about potential negative health effects, Melania Trump said she was “amazed at the place this company has in the food chain“. The First Lady, who proudly describes herself as a “full-time mom“, then realized that Monsanto produces other genetically modified crops such as soy, sugar beets, and cotton — and these products form the foundation of many American’s diets. But as Melania explained, this wasn’t as easy as it sounds. 70 to 80 percent of American processed foods contain genetically engineered ingredients, according to the Grocery Manufacturers of America.

YourNewsWire is a notorious promulgator of fake news and baseless conspiracy theories. For example, a March 2017 article asserting that former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates confirmed that vaccines are purposely designed to “depopulate the world,” which was surely news to Mr. Gates, whose philanthropical work includes improving access to life-saving vaccines for children in the poorest countries in the world.