Thursday, June 30, 2016

Label GMO Food in Plain English

Here's my version of an e-mail the Alliance for Natural Health is urging everyone to send to their U.S. Senators:

I apologize for this form letter...I'm disappointed to read the details of the new GMO compromise being offered by Sens. Roberts and Stabenow. The bill strikes me as a sneaky way to give Monsanto what it wants rather than the kind of labeling the overwhelming majority of consumers want.

The bill requires the labeling of packaged food containing GMOs in one of three ways: an electronic code that consumers can scan; a USDA-developed symbol; or a label. The bill leaves it to manufacturers to decide which of the three methods they prefer. Naturally they will prefer the code that can only be read with a scanner, which will be useless to most businesses and most individuals.

The QR code is hardly a label in any meaningful sense of the word. It *discriminates* against those who do not own smartphones--which is half of people living in rural areas, 75% of those over 65, and half of those making less than $30,000 a year. This legislation discriminates against all these people and especially the poorest Americans. Sens. Stabenow and Roberts should be ashamed of this.

An astounding 92% of consumers now want on-package labeling of genetically modified foods. As your constituent, I urge you to send this bill back to the House in a form that requires GMOs to be labelled in plain English, in clear and readable type.

And if they complain about that...I personally think the information should be available in Spanish, too. I'm willing to compromise on that part.