gmo labeling

Bad GMO Labeling Bill Expected Soon

A new bill to let food producers decide whether to label GMOs could prevent states from passing mandatory labeling laws. It’s expected to be introduced in the next few weeks—so we need to dissuade potential co-sponsors now! Action Alert! [1]

At the behest of the Monsantos and Cargills of the world, Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS) is expected to reintroduce his Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act in the next week or two. If passed, it would nullify the efforts of ten states that are currently considering bills to require the labeling of genetically engineered foods.

A bill to do the same thing was introduced in 2014. If the language is the same as before, this bill would give the FDA full authority to label GMOs,and the agency favors a voluntary approach [2]. With a federal framework in place, states would be precluded from setting up their own labeling standards.

The rationale offered by Rep. Pompeo for the bill is that it would avoid a “patchwork quilt of [state] food labeling requirements” across the country that would make it difficult for companies to operate. But if this is the sole reason, then why not introduce a mandatory label on the federal level so there is one cohesive standard?  The real reason for the bill is that the food industry and biotech firms are afraid to tell the public what is actually in their products.

We understand the bill will also contain a new section to create a government-sponsored voluntary certification program for GMO-free foods. Of course, this puts the onus on organic and non-GMO producers to label their products, when it should be the responsibility of those who are introducing new technologies into food production to label their GM products.

The fact is, we essentially already have a voluntary labeling system, and not a single company has elected to label its products that contain GMOs. If Congress passes this bill, Big Food can continue to keep consumers in the dark about what we’re eating.

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