GMO Food

Voluntary GMO Labeling Law Moves Forward in Congress

Preempts costly state mandatory labeling laws


Look Closer

The House Agriculture Committee reported out the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015 which would create a national voluntary labeling scheme under the direction of the U.S. Department of Agriculture in which producers who want to label their foods as containing ingredients derived from modern biotech crops, like, say, Arctic apples, can get certified. Conversely those who want to claim that their foods do not contain modified genes can be similarly certified. The Act would prohibit producers of certified and labeled non-GMO foods from suggesting "either expressly or by implication that covered products developed without the use of genetic engineering are safer or of higher quality than covered products produced from, containing, or consisting of a genetically engineered plant." Which is, of course, true. Certified GMO foods would also be prohibited from implying superior quality.   

The good news is that those seeking non-GMO certification and products will be responsible for paying for it, not the rest of us. In addition, the Act would preempt various state mandatory GMO labeling laws which would have imposed the costs for testing, tracking, and labeling of GMO foods on those of us who accept the scientific evidence for the safety and nutrition of GMO crops. I will report back as the bill proceeds (or not) through the legislative process.

For more background see my article, "The Top 5 Lies About Biotech Crops."