(Washington, D.C.)—Today, an increasingly discredited coalition of anti-GMO groups, led by Just Label It and the Environmental Working Group, went to Capitol Hill to join Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) in their misguided push for mandatory GMO labeling laws. Studies have found mandatory labeling laws will raise food costs for America’s families in the checkout aisle, impose unnecessary burdens on farmers and food producers and ultimately eliminate biotechnology from American agriculture.
“Mandatory labeling efforts mislead consumers about GMOs, which are perfectly safe, and represent a thinly veiled effort to remove modern biotechnology from American agriculture,” said Claire Parker, spokeswoman for the Coalition for Safe Affordable Food. “While mandatory labeling proponents say their movement is about consumer choice, the reality is that consumers already have those choices today and GMOs are among the most important tools that allow farmers and food producers to provide safe and affordable food choices to America’s families.”
Mandatory GMO labeling legislation backed by these anti-GMO groups and sponsored by DeFazio would needlessly impose higher costs and fewer choices on the families who can afford it the least. A recent study by economists at Cornell University estimated that additional costs to consumers could reach, on average, $500 per family per year, with some families bearing an increased cost of $1,500 per year. And because low-income families and seniors 65 or older spend a disproportionately large percentage of their incomes on food costs, higher food prices from mandatory labeling would impact them the most, according to a study by the Council for Agriculture Science and Technology.
The emerging consensus among America’s editorial boards, including DeFazio’s hometown paper, the Oregonian, is that responsible legislators should oppose efforts by anti-GMO groups to enact mandatory labeling laws, specifically when taking into consideration the harm caused when food labeling laws are based on ideology instead of science:
From the editorial board of The Oregonian, Peter DeFazio’s home paper:
“Mandatory food labels should display nutritionally relevant information, not ideology. “
Read more here.
The Washington Post: Genetically Modified Crops Could Help Improve the Lives of Millions
The Los Angeles Times: Base food labeling on fact, not fear
The New York Times: Why Label Genetically Engineered Food?
The mandatory labeling movement is nothing other than a concerted effort to eliminate biotechnology from the American marketplace. The Genetic Literacy Project, a nonprofit research consortium, highlighted the actual words of mandatory labeling proponents, which shed light on their views.
Read more here.
For more information about GMOs and the need for a federal labeling standard, visit www.CFSAF.org.
The Coalition for Safe Affordable Food is dedicated to providing policy makers, media, consumers and all stakeholders with the facts about ingredients grown through GM technology. We are also an advocate for common sense policy solutions that will only further enhance the safety of the GM crops and protect the vital role they play in today’s modern global food supply chain. The coalition is comprised of American farmers and representatives from a diverse group of industry and non-governmental organizations.