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California GMO Labeling Law Makes It Onto November Ballot

| Monday July 16th, 2012 | 3 Comments

Last month I wrote that California has become the battleground for GMO labeling in America. Now, Food Safety News has reported that “California’s Office of Secretary of State announced that the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, also known as the GMO labeling initiative, will appear on voter ballots as Proposition 37 for the November 6 elections.”

If passed in November, Prop. 37 would make California the first state in the U.S. to require labeling of most foods made with GMOs.   Given the size of California, such a law would become a de-facto national law because many retailers and manufacturers follow the most strict law in every region to make production simpler.  In 50 countries around the world, GMO labeling is already law. The state of Alaska is the only state in America that requires GMO shellfish and fish to be labeled, and it is the only state that has any kind of stipulation on labeling.

According to LabelGMOs.org, the organization responsible for getting the initiative on the ballot, it is time for Californians to stand up for their right to know. According to recent surveys, about 90 percent of Californians are in support of the GMO labeling.

Because over 90 percent of us want our foods labeled. We believe our right to know what we are buying and feeding ourselves and our kids supersedes corporate rights to a nontransparent profit. We are tired of elected officials buckling to corporate pressure over the clear desires of us, their constituents. We are outraged that we don’t have the same right that over 40 percent of the world’s population has: A clear, transparent market with genetically engineered ingredients disclosed in a simple, easy-to-read way.

Three-quarters of U.S. Senators rejected a federal GMO labeling bill earlier this year. Since then, nearly 20 states have had similar bills turned down in Congress.  All this is in spite of the fact that GMO labeling was one of President Obama’s campaign promises.

Most industrial food corporations oppose labeling because of the lack of clear direction from the FDA – the FDA only requires GM food to be labeled if they’re found to have a different nutritional value or level of safety. Both of these points are, of course, debatable.

According to Treehugger, its not a question about having a label or not. “It’s about giving the American public the tools to make their own decisions without fears that true food safety is being held hostage by a lack of necessary information.”

As I pointed out before, California is the key state in which this decision can be made for the whole country due to the sheer amount of food that grows there and also the number of food companies based there. Indeed, it wouldn’t be too far off the mark to say that if California gets a GMO labeling law, the rest of the country would soon follow. It will be interesting to see how this pans out.

Image Credit: Daquella manera/CC BY 2.0


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  • pdjmoo

    SUCH GREAT NEWS !!  We all now have to be exceptionally vigilant and keep moving forward as the battle line has now been now drawn:  Watch for the slick, multi-million pr/advertising campaigns by the biotech, Big Ag and Pesticide/Chemical Cartels AND the complicent USDA.  They will pull every trick in the book to stop this passing including scare tactics, loading the public up with a positive spin and stats; telling us how gmo’s will save the world and feed the hungry; how labeling will push up the cost of food and that gmo’s are nutritious, natural, sustainable and good for your health…it will be relentless… and don’t be surprised to see the pro-GMO Gates Foundation get into the fray.  This is a crucial battle for our food freedom, and could be our last big chance to stop this powerful, corrupt juggernaut moving rapidly now across the world’s agricultural lands … See my archives which clearly show the corporate global control of our food system playing out in ugly and powerful ways at YOUR FOOD, YOUR HEALTH http://www.scoop.it/t/agriculture-and-gmos-gm
    Thank you 3P for reporting on this crucial issue.

  • Anthony Brown

    Really, it’s a big news for California people. However, we need to wait till November. I got lot of information about the GMO in the following article – 
    http://www.rosebudmag.com/truth-squad/california-gmo-labeling-initiative

  • CharliePeters

    GMO fuel ethanol stinks