Bill Blocking GMO Label Requirements By States Passes U.S. House

monsanto gmoDespite the overwhelming scientific consensus that genetically modified foods are safe for consumption, a couple of states have passed laws requiring labels for any foods produced using this technology. These states, urged on by the organic industry lobby, would force food manufacturers to place labels on their food that would re-enforce the narrative pushed by industry groups like Organic Consumers Association, GMO Inside and others that the technology is unsafe.

Vermont was one of the states that passed a GMO labeling law, and the legislation claims that, “There have been no long-term or epidemiologic studies in the United States that examine the safety of human consumption of genetically engineered foods.” However, that statement is false as thousands of studies have been done which prove that foods produced using genetic modification are indeed safe – a fact that the multi-billion dollar organic industry or Big Organic likes to ignore.

Yes, you heard that right, organic foods are a multi-billion dollar industry and it has a coalition of activists that work on their behalf. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at the partners, including Vani Hari (aka Food Babe), that GMO Inside lists on their coalition page. These activists and the industry they represent have pushed for labels which are designed to scare consumers, not to give them the “right to know” as claimed by opponents of The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015.

The House on Thursday passed hotly contested legislation that would keep states from issuing mandatory labeling laws for foods that contain genetically modified organisms, often called GMOs.

The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015, which passed 275-150, would instead create a federal standard for the voluntary labeling of foods with GMO ingredients.

Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), who authored the bill, called mandatory labeling laws — which have already passed in Vermont, Connecticut and Maine — unnecessarily costly given that GMOs have been deemed safe by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

“Precisely zero pieces of credible evidence have been presented that foods produced with biotechnology pose any risk to our health and safety,” Pompeo said. “We should not raise prices on consumers based on the wishes of a handful of activists.”

Opponents have pushed back against the legislation, saying it will keep consumers from knowing what’s in their food and stop FDA from crafting a national GMO-labeling solution. (Source)

It is important to point out that The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015 does not ban labels as some activists are claiming, but it gives the authority to do so to the Food and Drug Administration, instead of allowing states to create their own different and confusing set of laws. The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015, which is welcomed by farmers and manufacturers, would create uniform labeling standards, instead of the various local regulations based on discredited studies like Seralini and promoted by the $35 billion organic industry.

I agree with the left on many issues, but the anti-GMO campaign for labeling laws which are not based on science and promoted by charlatans like Mike Adams or Vani Hari is where I differ. The appeal to nature fallacy is an appeal to emotion rather than reason, an area where liberals (including Bernie Sanders) have a weak spot, especially given their valid mistrust of corporate interests. I know, because I used to be one of those people, and I briefly fell for the glossy advertising and the fear-mongering campaigns like March Against Monsanto.

The GMO labeling law controversy is not David vs Goliath. It is not a grassroots campaign against an evil empire that is led by “Monsatan” as they like to call the only biotech company they can usually name. It is a battle by one industry pretending that they’re the underdog who is just looking out for you while they battle against another industry for a share of the valuable American food market. Don’t believe me? Whole Foods, which helped shape the USDA Organic Standards, had over $14 billion in sales last year, thanks in part to their campaign to make higher-priced organic foods more mainstream. Oh yeah, and for the liberals who shop there, I’m sure you’ll be happy to know that their founder, John Mackey is also a libertarian.

This isn’t to say that the conventional food industry is without their own set of faults, but fear mongering and disguising multi-billion dollar capitalism as consumer activism is extremely shady to say the least. If we are going to label foods, it should be based on science and at the federal level (commerce clause anyone?) rather than a patchwork of state and local laws based on debunked studies and appeal to nature fallacies.


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