2013 has been an amazing year in the fight for GE labeling! We have seen the first passage of GE lableing laws on the state level, the introduction of legislation on the national level and the fight for GE labeling has come to the forefront of food issues here in the U.S. As we get ready to embark on another year of fighting for the consumers right to know, we wanted to share some of the tremendous stories that have made this year a groundbreaking one.
March 10 – Whole Foods Market, the grocery chain, announced that it would require all foods sold in its stores that contain genetically modified ingredients to be labeled as such within five years. The company is the first retailer in the country to require the labeling, and its executives received a standing ovation when they made the announcement during the Natural Products Expo West, a trade conference, in California. Read more >>
April 25 – Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) introduced bills to the Senate and House of Representatives that would require food manufacturers to clearly label any product containing genetically engineered ingredients — or risk having that product classified “misbranded” by the FDA. Read More >
May 10 – The Vermont House of Representatives has passed H. 112, a bill requiring the labeling of all genetically engineered (GE) food sold in Vermont. However, there are plenty of hurdles ahead. Read More >>
May 31 – For global consumers now on high alert over a rogue strain of genetically modified wheat found in Oregon, the question is simple: How could this happen? For a cadre of critics of biotech crops, the question is different: How could it not?
June 3 – Given Ben & Jerry’s tree-hugging image, it might be a surprise to some of its fans that the company’s ice cream includes genetically modified organisms (GMOs) among its ingredients. It does, but now the Unilever brand is promising to eliminate the controversial food products, pledging to go completely GMO-free by 2014. Read More >>
June 4 – Connecticut passed HB-6519, a bill that would require the labeling of genetically engineered (GE) food sold in Connecticut. The amended bill, after passing through the Senate this weekend, passed through the House by an overwhelming margin of 134 to 3, and makes Connecticut the first U.S. state to pass a law for GE labeling. Read More >>
June 14 – Just days after Connecticut passed its genetically-engineered food labeling law, Maine lawmakers approved their own legislation requiring food manufacturers to reveal genetically engineered ingredients on products’ packaging. The governors in both New England states are expected to sign the bills into law soon. Read More >>
June 21 – Senate Appropriations Committee passed an amendment to label genetically engineered salmon, which was offered by Senator Murkowski (R-AK) and added to a spending bill language. The amendment passed through the Committee by a narrow margin of 15 to 14, and would provide at least $150,000 for labeling. Senator Begich (D-AK) was a co-sponsor of the amendment, and also voted in favor. Read More >
June 27 – More than six months after a big defeat in California, the movement to label foods containing genetically modified organisms appears to be picking up steam across the country. In the past three weeks, Connecticut and Maine passed labeling bills, the U.S. Department of Agriculture for the first time approved a non-GMO label claim for meat products, Chipotle began voluntarily labeling menu items containing GMO ingredients online, and, perhaps most notably, the Senate Appropriations Committee voted last week to give the U.S. Food and Drug Administration funding to label genetically modified salmon if the agency approves the fish. Read More >>
November 14 – The outcome was clear to many on election night, but backers of Initiative 522 waited to concede on Thursday evening that its campaign to label genetically modified foods in Washington had lost. Numbers improved in recent days for the Yes on 522 campaign, but nine days after the Nov. 5 election the measure still was trailing by 46,213 votes or nearly 3 percentage points. Read More >>