A new bipartisan bill that would give Americans more information about what’s in their food was reintroduced on Thursday, Feb. 12 in both the U.S. Senate and House, as announced on the Center for Food Safety’s website.
The bill, introduced by Sens. Barbara Boxer of California, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon, would require that food manufacturers label foods that contain genetically modified ingredients.
“We cannot continue to keep Americans in the dark about the food they eat,” said Rep. Peter DeFazio.
“More than sixty other countries make it easy for consumers to choose. Why should the U.S. be any different? If food manufacturers stand by their product and the technology they use to make it, they should have no problem disclosing that information to consumers.”
Chef Tom Colicchio also joined them to add his voice to the discussion.
“The public wants more information about the food they are buying and how it’s grown,” said Colicchio, owner of Craft Restaurants and co-founder of Food Policy Action. “I applaud Senators Boxer and Blumenthal and Representative DeFazio for their leadership and urge their colleagues to join them in standing up for the 93 percent of Americans who want to know whether their food has been genetically modified.”
In total, over 1.4 million signatures have been collected on behalf of people demanding their right to know whether their food contains GMOs, a right which is afforded to residents in over 60 countries.
“The industry promise that planting GMO crops would reduce the need for harmful weed killers has been broken,” said Mary Ellen Kustin, EWG senior policy analyst.
“We’ve run the first 20 years of the GMO experiment and now know that in fact GMOs require more herbicides over time. With even more toxic compounds like 2,4-D and dicamba being approved for use on GMO crops, consumers should be able to make informed decisions about what food they’re buying.”
As noted by the Center, Labeling opponents are pushing a bill that would pre-empt GMO labeling laws already in effect in Vermont, Maine and Connecticut, as well as pending legislation in more than 20 other states.
The legislation pushed by the opposition is known much-maligned (and misleading) “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act,” which has been dubbed by activists as the DARK (Deny Americans the Right to Know) Act.
The DARK Act was actually introduced by a powerful pro-GMO food lobby (learn more about it here along with how you can help stop it).
Nick Meyer writes for March Against Monsanto and the website AltHealthWORKS.com.