First state to require GMO labeling: Vermont senate passes mandatory GMO labeling by the majority vote
Vermont seems to become the first state in US to mandate labeling of foods that have been genetically modified, although the legislators are worried about a lawsuit threat coming from the giant biotech Monsanto.
The senate gave a decisive 26-2 vote in favor of GMO labeling and the law is set to become effective on July 1, 2016.
The Senate President John Campbell said that “We are saying people have a right to know what’s in their food.” Campbell and other pro-GMO labeling supporters in the Senate believe that they have written a legally defensible bill. They also have created a fund to help the state to pay its legal fees if the giant Frankenfood companies decide to sue Vermont.
Two other states including Connecticut and Maine have already passed GMO labeling laws, but they both have delayed mandating GMO labeling (in order to protect themselves from being sued) until other neighboring states begin to join them.
The spokesperson for the Vermont Right to Know GMOs coalition, Andrea Stander says that they all expect a lawsuit from the giant biotech for mandating GMO labeling.
"It's not just Vermont," says Stander. "This affects everyone who eats. Consumers all across the country have woken up to the fact that we've become an unregulated feeding experiment by the biotech industry. People want to know if their foods are made with these ingredients. This gives people the choice."
Recently, the big Island Hawaii was sued by the giant biotech for passing a bill that would prohibit the biotech corporations from planting new GE crops. The bill also requires giant biotech to create buffer zones between fields that are sprayed with pesticides and public places like homes, hospitals and schools: http://seattleorganicrestaurants.com/vegan-whole-food/agribusinesses-chemical-companies-sue-Hawaii-anti-GMO-regulation.php
Aren’t individual rights more important than industry rights?
GMO battle goes beyond Hawaii, Vermont, Connecticut or Maine. In fact, the giant biotech poured more than $70 million of dollars to kill GMO labeling movement in California and Washington.
Despite the harms of GMOs, the biotech and chemical corporations have been lying about the fact that Frankenfoods and pesticide ridden foods (that are highly contaminated with toxins and heavy metals) are undermining people’s health.
Recent studies show that the active ingredient in Monsanto’s popular weedkiller Roundup is now accumulating in human tissues and is found in the breast milk of women across in US: http://seattleorganicrestaurants.com/vegan-whole-food/popular-weedkiller-herbicide-roundup-glyphosate-in-breast-milk-of-american-women.php
Monsanto’s hypocrisy on how GMOs are so unique that are patentable but so substantially equivalent that don’t need to be labeled:
More and more studies are suggesting that GMO foods are fundamentally flawed and radically different than their non-GMO counterparts.
A part of legal argument for labeling GMOs is the fact that GE crops are different and unique and therefore they should be labeled accordingly. The patent of biotech companies on GE foods proves the point that GE crops are different. Biotech Company Monsanto has used its patent law to sue over 4,000 farmers and have forces many farmers to pay for Monsanto’s biotechnology fee.
Apparently, no state representatives in Vermont have any opposition to transparency of GMO food labeling, but some are concerned about the lawsuit filed by giant biotech:
“Nobody else has passed a similar bill. They all seem to be waiting for Vermont to go first and lead the nation” says Representative Tom Koch (R-Barre).
“What they mean is they don’t want to risk their taxpayers’ money; they want us to risk Vermonters’ money. That is a $5 million to $10 million risk, and one I am not willing to take,” he added.
However, the threats of legal action taken by giant biotech Monsanto seems to have watered down, partly because Vermont’s legislation exempts labeling meat, dairy and eggs of animals that are fed on GE corn or are treated with rBGH growth hormones.