Senate Committee Passes Bill Blocking State GMO Labeling

March 2, 2016 02:45 PM
Senate Committee Passes Bill Blocking State GMO Labeling

A Senate panel on Tuesday approved a bill that would block state labeling requirements for genetically modified foods.

The Senate Agriculture Committee voted 14-6 to prevent the labeling on packages of foods that include genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. Vermont is set to require such labels this summer, and other states are considering similar laws.

Senators have said they want to find a compromise on the labeling issue before Vermont's law kicks in. Sen. Pat Roberts, chairman of the panel, said a patchwork of state laws could be costly for agriculture, food companies and ultimately consumers.

"Now is not the time for Congress to make food more expensive for anybody," Roberts said.

The bill would create voluntary labels for companies that want to use them on food packages that contain genetically modified ingredients.

Genetically modified seeds are engineered in laboratories to have certain traits, like resistance to herbicides. The majority of the country's corn and soybean crop is now genetically modified, with much of that going to animal feed. Corn and soybeans are also made into popular processed food ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup, corn starch and soybean oil.

The food industry says about 75 percent to 80 percent of foods contain genetically modified ingredients.

While the Food and Drug Administration says there is little scientific concern about the safety of those GMOs on the market, advocates for labeling say not enough is known about their risks

The legislation approved Tuesday is similar to a bill the House passed last year. The food industry has backed both bills, saying GMOs are safe.

Labeling advocates have been fighting state-by-state to enact the labeling, with the eventual goal of a national standard.

Passage won't be as easy in the Senate, where 60 votes will be needed to overcome a certain filibuster.

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Spell Check

Benoit Reginster
Swanton, VT
3/2/2016 01:58 PM

  The farm Is about 9 miles from Lake Champlain. We had a pasture that never been plow for more than 50 years. In 2011 we plant soya rundup gmo. The year later we plant corn gmo . Then in2013 we plant soya bean again. In 2013 I saw the structure of the soil was changing . I took a shovel to find worms in soil and they where all disaper .could it be the résidues of gmo corn which poison the worms and all the acarian in soil . Before gmo corn when we plow in the field a lot of seagull fallowed in the back of the tractor now no more seagull because no more worms. That poison Is it good for corn sirop or corn stach. Think twice i banned all gmo on my farm


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