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GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS (GMOS) : FOOD DRINK NUTRITION DIET: FOOD LABELING : LAW: STATE AND LOCAL : UNITED STATES: STATES: VERMONT : UNITED STATES: GOVERNMENT: SENATE: Senate Approves Bill To Outlaw Vermont GMO Labels, Replace Them With Barcodes

David P. Dillard
 

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Date: Sat, 9 Jul 2016 19:00:32 -0400 (EDT)
From: David P. Dillard <jwne@...>
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Subject: GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS (GMOS) : FOOD DRINK NUTRITION DIET: FOOD
LABELING : LAW: STATE AND LOCAL : UNITED STATES: STATES: VERMONT : UNITED
STATES: GOVERNMENT: SENATE: Senate Approves Bill To Outlaw Vermont GMO
Labels, Replace Them With Barcodes




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GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS (GMOS) :

FOOD DRINK NUTRITION DIET: FOOD LABELING :

LAW: STATE AND LOCAL :

UNITED STATES: STATES: VERMONT :

UNITED STATES: GOVERNMENT: SENATE:

Senate Approves Bill To Outlaw Vermont GMO Labels,
Replace Them With Barcodes

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Senate Approves Bill To Outlaw Vermont GMO Labels,
Replace Them With Barcodes

July 8, 2016

By Chris Morran

https://consumerist.com/2016/07/08/senate-approves-bill-
to-outlaw-vermont-gmo-labels-replace-them-with-barcodes/

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A shorter URL for the above link:

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http://tinyurl.com/gmr5oe7

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Even though some of the nations largest food producers including General Mills, PepsiCo, Campbell Soup, Mars Inc., Bimbo, and Nestle have already updated their packaging to comply with Vermonts new labeling requirement for foods containing genetically modified (GMO) ingredients, these tiny lines of text may be short lived. Last night, the U.S. Senate voted to approve legislation that will not only outlaw Vermonts labeling requirement, but eventually (maybe) replace these text labels with something as obscure as a barcode.

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The bill, which had already skated through an important procedural vote earlier in the week, was approved yesterday by a vote of 63-30. It now goes to the House of Representatives, which has already agreed to similar legislation. The House could take up this bill as early as next week.

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The Senate legislation written by Sen. Pat Roberts (KS) and Sen. Debbie Stabenow (MI), who have received a total of more than $2.1 million from agribusiness donors in the current election cycle purports to create a national standard for GMO labeling. However, in order to do so, it explicitly prohibits states and other local governments from enacting their own labeling rules.

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The law then gives federal regulators at least two years to create this national standard. Given that amount of time, one might expect that the resulting national GMO label must be some sort of black box alert like you see on prescription opioids or cigarettes. Not even close.

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Rather than the Produced with Genetic Engineering language seen in the Vermont labels, this national label need not even reference GMO content. It can merely provide a URL or just a barcode that suggests a customer to a website for more information.

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This is not a label; its an obstacle course, said Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley after Wednesdays procedural vote.

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Additionally, critics of this bill argue that the definitions used in the text of the legislation provide huge loopholes for popular ingredients like high fructose corn syrup, and other oils or sugars from genetically engineered plants.

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This bill undermines clear labeling, and it blocks state laws in Vermont, Alaska, Maine and Connecticut that are already on the books, says Jean Halloran, director of food policy initiatives for our colleagues at Consumers Union. There are serious questions about potential loopholes in the bill that the Food and Drug Administration says could leave most GMO products exempt from any labeling requirements at all. Nine out of ten consumers support mandatory, on-package labels for GMOs. People have a right to know what theyre eating, and this bill fails to serve consumers interests.


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The complete article may be read at the URL above.

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David Dillard
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