Getting GMO Labeling on the Ballot in California
The fact that 165 million acres of GMO crops are currently being cultivated is made even worse by the idea that it's difficult and sometimes impossible to avoid these foods in your grocery store. As a nation we have vastly more GMO cultivated land than any other country and we're one of the few industrialized nations that doesn't label GMOs as such. But this could all change, starting with California. Proponents of GMO labeling are fighting hard to get the measure on the California ballot in 2012 so the masses can let their opinion be known.According to LabelGMOs.org, after the organization turns in the language of the initiative the state can take 40 to 60 days to digest it. And once they get it back, they have 150 days to gather 504,760 qualifying signatures. Experts at LabelGMOS.org think they need between 750,000 and 800,000 signatures to ensure the initiative gets on the ballot. Here's more about their signature gathering campaign.
Natural News reported on the ballot initiative as well.
The measure also has the potential to set a new labeling standard for the rest of the US as well, which could eventually drive GMOs out of the marketplace altogether.
The biotechnology industry and its allies have pumped billions of dollars into lobbying efforts that have effectively prevented every proposal for GMO labeling from moving forward.
We are one of the few industrialized nations that doesn't require labeling of GMO foods. In Europe all products containing more than .9 percent GMO are labeled as such. But in the US, there is no such standard. We would like to believe that our foods come from nature, but that's far from the case. Currently, 30 other countries have significant restrictions placed on GMOs.
The only system in place right now is the NON GMO Project. The NON GMO Project scientifically tests all of the individual ingredients that make up a product using a third party testing facility. But this is a non-profit multi-stakeholder collaboration and it's not government funded.
There's no shortage of reasons why GMO labeling is necessary. It's about giving the American public the tools to make their own decisions without fears that true food safety is being held hostage by a lack of necessary information. The detrimental impact that GMO cultivation has on our environment is widespread including creating dead zones where biodiversity is all but abolished and the contamination of heirloom and organic seeds with GMO varieties.
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