Wednesday, 15 August, 2018

Will GMO Labeling 'Win' Be Undermined by Loopholes?

Melissa Porter | 09 July, 2016, 08:42

That's because the overwhelming majority of consumers say they want to know if there are GMO's in their food.

What does the Senate's GMO labeling bill actually do?

Both sides of this fight agree that there should be labels.

In his weekly conference call, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says Iowa needs the bill to prevent a patchwork of state labeling laws.

The Senate passed the bill 63-30 late Thursday despite criticism that the bill's definition of bioengineering was so tight that it would exempt from disclosure many highly refined ingredients, including oils and starches, and products developed through gene editing and other newer techniques.

Shumlin said Wednesday, "It's a sad day when so many members of the U.S. Senate sell out to big food and big business and turn their backs on those who elected them".

The measure now goes to the House of Representatives, where it is expected to pass.

Pro-labeling groups are far from celebrating the bill but see some potential in pushing the would-be law, and the industry it regulates, toward the on-package labeling option in the implementation process.

For more information on the need for a federal labeling standard, visit the Coalition for Safe Affordable Food, at www.CFSAF.org. One particular point the FDA made was that some GMO corn may be excluded because of "ambiguous" language.

After the Senate cloture vote, U.S. Sen.

I think GMO labelling is a bad idea - not because we should hide or somehow keep ingredients secret, but because we can't inform a public that is ignorant about genetics and genomics.

Bernie Sanders also condemned the bill.

The GE crops in the US include: corn, soybeans, canola, cotton, sugar beets, alfalfa, Hawaiian papaya, zucchini, and yellow crookneck squash, according to labeling advocacy group Just Label It. The domestic sugar market has been strained by rising demand for non-GMO ingredients like cane sugar.

The fact that a plant's genes have been altered through recombinant DNA techniques - rather than conventional crossbreeding or. or whatever - is simply not very meaningful.

"It's fair to say that it's not the ideal bill, but it is certainly the bill that can pass, which is the most important right now", said American Soybean Association's (ASA) director of policy communications Patrick Delaney.

These provisions go a long way in protecting the industry from another activist-driven, anti-agriculture mandatory labeling program like the Vermont law, which went into effect last week.