July 21, 2018

Hawaii Senate Rejects GMO Labeling Bill

The Hawaii Senate committees on Agriculture, Commerce and Consumer Protection and Health deferred House Bill 174, after hearing the proposal. The bill has had a rocky ride in that state. On March 19, 2013, the Senate Agriculture Committee voted to not even hear the proposal after it passed the House by a 50 to 1 margin. Then on March 20, Democrats held a caucus and said that the bill would be heard.

GMO TomatoThe public hearing was held on March 21, and then the three committees deferred the bill. Some members of the Senate said they want to see a study of the issue and will call for it via a concurrent resolution. Those who spoke against the bill included Monsanto employees. They said that GMO foods are safe and that labeling would impose costs on the industry.

Advocates of labeling say the public has the right to know what’s in the food they’re buying for their families. In addition, they say that corporations such as Monsanto have not proved that GMOs are safe for human consumption and have not proved that there are no environmental effects. Safety assessment of GMO foods are based on “substantial equivalence.” That means if a new food has similar composition and nutrition, it can be regarded as safe.

The two main traits added to GMO foods are tolerance to herbicides and forcing a plant to produce its own pesticides. These actions let farms spray weed killers on the crop without damaging or killing it. The GMO crops now planted in the U.S. include soy, cotton, canola, sugar beets, and corn.

Comments

  1. adam steinberg says:

    CRAZY – all labeling laws defeated by republicans, lobbyists and corporate interests – Monsanto and their cronies own our government and food chain – not organics yet, but rumor has it they are trying.

  2. diane clavette says:

    Something as important as the food we eat should be put to a vote by the people, after they are educated about GMO foods. Also the people have a right to know who funds these studies and who profits.

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