Food Labeling

Episode 3, November 10, 2014

This is Episode 3 of The Go Green Report for November 10, 2014. This episode is brought to you by Control-n-Roll—a household product that helps you save toilet paper and paper towels with every pull. To find out more visit ControlnRoll.com.

In the most recent election cycle, several states proposed ballot measures that would impose mandatory labeling to inform consumers as to when Genetically Modified Organisms, or “GMOs” are used in the production of food. Advocates of these political measures claim that consumers have a right to know when these ingredients are used in the processing of their food. Those that oppose these measures claim that not only are the particular GMOs that are being used safe, but that labeling the products will cause an unnecessary financial strain on the food production industry.

GMOs have been the object of controversy since their inception in the 1980’s. The American Academy of Environmental Medicine claims that there are many health risks that result from the use of certain GMOs, citing animal studies that indicate some serious health concerns including infertility, accelerated aging, and changes in the liver, kidney, spleen, and gastrointestinal system.”

Such studies, however, have not been enough to convince lawmakers to universally mandate the labeling of GMOs here in the United States.

As the political battle rages on, many victories against artificial ingredients in our food supplies have been won thus far. 64 different nations worldwide have already begun to require the labeling of genetically engineered food, including Australia, Brazil, China, Russia, and members of the European Union. Here in the US, the state of Vermont passed our nation’s first statewide labeling law for genetically engineered food on May 8 of this year. The food labeling movement is gaining steam as this election cycle saw Oregon and Colorado joining the fight with ballot initiatives for GMO labeling.

Inhabitat.com recently published a report that new biotechnologies are beating out GMOs in the food production process. These technologies attempt to replace artificial GM-based processing with organic ingredients and processes in a cost-effective manner.

Regardless of your beliefs on the safety of GMOs, preservatives, and other artificial food additives, we all share a right to know what is in the food that we and our families are eating. Luckily, there are numerous tools available to help you, the consumer, know just what your food is made of.

Treehugger.com recently endorsed a smartphone app called Food Scores that allows the user to see the ingredients of most mass-produced food options.

Also, there are many campaigns to try and impose mandatory GMO-labelling measures in the United States. If you want to contribute to these efforts, The Center for Food Safety is currently seeking signatures on a petition to bring about mandatory labeling, which you can find at centerforfoodsafety.org/take-action. You can also find the different bills that are currently under review by state there.

We encourage you to contact your senators and congressmen and apply pressure to vote in favor of these food-labeling measures that are up for review. Regardless of your standing on GMOs, it is the consumer’s right to know what they are eating.

This episode was brought to you by Control-n-Roll.

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