The battle over GMO labeling wages on. Opponents of mandatory GMO labeling were dealt a blow by Congress recently. Stephanie Strom of The New York Times reported that the proposed bill, which would have stopped states from requiring genetically modified organisms to be identified on the nutrition facts label, did not garner enough support to move forward. Connecticut and Maine have both adopted laws requiring food manufacturers to label GMOs, but these will not go into effect unless neighboring states do the same.
GMOs in Food
While GMOs have been in food for decades, the debate over identifying them through food labeling has been a heated one. The World Health Organization stated that it considers glyphosate, an herbicide used on GMO crops, to perhaps be a cancer-causing agent, reported Daniel Cressey of Scientific American.
"Consumer groups are calling for increased transparency in food labeling."
Consumer groups are calling for increased transparency in food labeling, stating that they reserve the right to see what's in their food products and make their own decisions. Opponents of mandatory labeling state that this requirement would be inherently misleading and unfair to food manufacturers, because there is no ironclad proof that GMOs are harmful.
Reactions from Food Manufacturers
Food manufacturers have responded in different ways. Campbell's Soup Co., in a recent press release, stated that it favors mandatory GMO food labeling. General Mills has declared it will be identifying GMOs on its labels voluntarily. General Mills also noted that requiring labeling in only some states will drive up costs, so it makes more sense to label GMOs wherever its good are sold.
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