On July 29, 2016, President Obama signed into law an Act amending the Agricultural Marketing at of 1946 which provides for a national bioengineered food di
Click on the link below to see the letter.
The American Association of the Advancement of Science takes a strong stand against forced labeling:
There are several current efforts to require labeling of foods containing products derived from genetically modified crop plants, commonly known as GM crops or GMOs. These efforts are not driven by evidence that GM foods are actually dangerous. Indeed, the science is quite clear: crop improvement by the modern molecular techniques of biotechnology is safe. Rather, these initiatives are driven by a varietyof factors, ranging from the persistent perception that such foods are somehow “unnatural” and potentially dangerous to the desire to gain competitive advantage by legislating attachment of a label meant to alarm. Another misconception used as a rationale for labeling is that GM crops are untested…
Read what the FDA has to say about GMOs
Anti GMO Activist Says Science Changed His Mind
This is the speech which inspired the NPR story:
The Potential Impacts of Mandatory Labeling for Genetically Engineered Food in the United States
There is no scientific evidence that genetically engineered (GE) foods have any harmful or long-term effects over multiple generations.
- The U.S. National Academy of Sciences concluded that GE poses no new or different risks to food safety.
- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has stated that it has no basis for finding that GE foods, “as a class, . . . present any different or greater safety concern than foods developed by traditional plant breeding.”
- The World Trade Organization frowns on process-based labels mandating disclosure of information on production-process issues that do not relate to food safety.
- There is no science-based reason to single out GE foods for mandatory process-based labeling.
- Mandatory labeling could have negative implications for First Amendment rights and trade issues [and] will increase food costs.
No comprehensive GE labeling law has yet passed in any state.
- There are major legal issues associated with state laws mandating process-based GE labeling.
- The First Amendment prohibits government compulsion of commercial speech unless the speech is factual, uncontroversial, and reasonably related to a legitimate government interest.
- An alternative to state-by-state laws would be the implementation of a national GE labeling law.
- Market-driven voluntary labeling measures are currently providing consumers with non-GE choices.
- Over time, food prices would rise to cover the incremental costs of any mandatory GE labeling regime in the U.S. market, and these increased costs would exact a greater burden on low-income families.
Summary and conclusion:
- Mandatory labeling abandons the U.S. practice of providing for food preferences through voluntary product differentiation and labeling.
- Current labeling authority is federal; state mandatory labeling laws may be invalidated for conflicting with federal authority.
- Labeling at the national level has trade implications.
- Mandatory GE labeling would increase U.S. food costs.
- Objective information on the scientific issues and possible legal ramifications needs to be provided to legislators and consumers.
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