October 19, 2018

Washington State Enters the GE Food Labeling Fray

After the defeat of Proposition 37 in California, which would have mandated labeling any food that contained genetically engineered (GE) or genetically modified (GMO) foods, Washington state is entering the battle. An initiative called  I-522 proposes that all foods produced through genetic engineering sold in that state be labeled.

GMO LabelingThe initiative states that since the vast majority of the public wants to know if their food was produced using genetic engineering, and since consumers have a right to know what’s in the food they buy, labeling is necessary. The organization has collected 340,000 signatures, more than the 241,00 required to send the proposal to the Legislature. If the Washington State Legislature does not approve the measure, it will appear on the general election ballot in November.

Supporters of the initiative also claim that since 49 nations require labeling of GE foods, the lack of labeling in this country puts a crimp in the food exporting business. If you’re a registered voter in the state of Washington, you can sign the initiative at many businesses.

Many huge corporations donated millions of dollars to defeat Prop 37 in California. So far, the organization behind I-522 has raised about $350,000 to support their cause. We’ll see if Monsanto, General Mills, Cow, and Dupont will join the fight and try to defeat I-522.

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