Today, Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) is set to introduce a bill that would preempt state mandatory GMO labeling efforts. The bill, strongly backed by The Grocery Manufacturer’s Association (GMA), Monsanto and the Koch brothers, would give ultimate authority of the issue over to the FDA. This is concerning because the FDA favors a voluntary approach to the extremely controversial issue. The FDA also tends to side with biotech on the GMO issue. If this bill comes to pass, where does that leave the public’s demand for the right to know what is in their food?
Thankfully, pro-GMO labeling groups are determined to keep lawmakers from backing the Pompeo bill. Groups including Just Label It stormed over a hundred offices on Capitol Hill earlier this week and campaigned for two other initiatives that would instead demand mandatory food labeling. The bills, HR 1699 and S 809, were introduced last April by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) respectively.
In biotech’s latest efforts to stifle the peoples’s right to know, Monsanto has threatened to sue the entire state of Vermont over a proposed GMO labeling bill. The popular legislative bill requiring mandatory labels on genetically engineered food (H-722) is stalling in the Vermont House Agriculture Committee, with only four weeks left until the legislature adjourns for the year. Despite thousands of emails and calls from constituents who overwhelmingly support mandatory labeling, despite the fact that a majority (6 to 5) of Agriculture Committee members support passage of the measure, Vermont legislators are holding up the labeling bill and refusing to take a vote for fear of Monsanto’s threats.
In Oregon, two separate county measures will have to battle biotech bank accounts to have a fighting chance at passing. Syngenta, Monsanto, and Dow, among others, have formed an alliance waging a multimillion-dollar campaign to defeat the Oregon ballot measures. St. Louis-based Monsanto Co. and its allies in the biotech and food industries have set a spending target of $6 million for the campaign against the labeling initiative, according to industry sources. That’s 40 times the $150,000 the pro-labeling forces say they will spend.
Monsanto and other biotech corporations have spent millions fighting GMO initiatives in addition to the over $260,000 they openly pumped into the House, and $122,000 pumped into the Senate. Please keep in mind these are just known numbers. Speculation would lead one to believe the numbers are in fact much higher.
The labeling of food with genetically modified ingredients has been a contentious issue around the world, with several countries mandating labels at the insistence of environmental and consumer advocates. That hasn’t happened in the United States, where the Food and Drug Administration says engineered food is no different than conventional food and so needs no labels that reveal details of production.
Most developed nations do not consider GMOs to be safe, however. In more than 60 countries around the world, including Australia, Japan, and all of the countries in the European Union, there are significant restrictions or outright bans on the production and sale of GMOs. In the U.S., the government has approved GMOs based on studies conducted by the same corporations that created them and profit from their sale.
To fight back, please vote with your dollars. Every dollar spent on organic food or food stamped with the non-GMO verified food project seal is a dollar kept out of Monsanto’s bank account. Shop at a local farmer’s market and support the efforts of our farmers who still care to provide people with real, poison-free food. Consider planting a garden. Even the smallest patios or balconies can be maximized to grow enough food to sustain a small family. Join the global protest against Monsanto to stop the destruction of the food supply and the hostile take over of the global seed supply. Whatever you do, do something!! The only way to stop this is to be proactive and make a stand for future generations.
Featured Image: politicalblindspot.com
Tami Canal | (The Anti-Media)