California's Proposition 37, which would have required clear labels on genetically engineered food, was defeated. Supporters of the measure had initially cited a French study on laboratory rats which suggested a correlation between genetically modified food and cancerous tumors. The study has since been discredited by both European and American scientists.
Monsanto and DuPont spent a great deal of cash to fight the proposed labeling initiative, spending nearly $50 million in opposition to Proposition 37.
"Californians and all Americans deserve the right to know what's in their food," said Jean Halloran, Director of Food Policy Initiatives for Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy arm of Consumer Reports.
California proponents of the measure have vowed to continue the fight, but with little evidence that GMOs have any negative health effects on consumers, GMO labeling supporters will have an uphill battle.