GMO labeling is more than just a fad. Over the past several years, more than 70 bills have been introduced in more than 30 states, by state lawmakers who want GMO foods labeled.
Monsanto and Big Food, though they say they have nothing to hide, are intent in preventing or repealing those state laws—so they can continue to hide the fact that their products have been genetically engineered, or contain GMO ingredients. This week (October 7, 2015), 95 state lawmakers from 21 states issued a joint letter asking Congress to reject H.R. 1599, Monsanto’s bill to preempt state and federal mandatory GMO labeling laws. (The bill passed the House on July 23).
In a press release, Maine Rep. Michelle Dunphy (D-Old Town), said:
“H.R. 1599 is being deceptively sold to Congress on the mistruth that it will address consumers’ concerns by establishing a uniform federal standard for GMO labeling. In fact, H.R. 1599 would preempt state and federal mandatory labeling laws and instead establish a voluntary, government-run program for labeling non-GMO foods. States have historically held the right to pass food safety and food labeling laws, and Congress should not undermine that right just to protect the biotech industry.”
In their joint letter, the lawmakers wrote:
HR 1599 would undermine the existing rights of states to pass food labeling laws; it would undermine the efforts of the thousands of people working to create basic transparency in food labels in their states; it would undermine the rights of consumers to basic information; and it would undermine the concept of a free market based on truth and transparency in labeling.