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Organic Consumers Association

Several Million Uncounted Prop 37 Votes--What's Going On?

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Genetic Engineering page, Millions Against Monsanto page and our California News page.

California could have been the first state in the nation to mandate the labeling of genetically engineered foods. We would have joined more than  60 countries  where consumers have the right to know if their food has been genetically modified. But the prospect of Proposition 37 terrified the junk food and pesticide companies that want to keep us in the dark about what we eat.

The "No on 37" campaign  spent $46 million  burying the state's voters in an avalanche of misleading ads and outright falsehoods. Their efforts defeated the proposition, 53 percent to 47 percent.

But Monsanto and their peeps didn't just spend $46 million promoting their opinion. They also lied and got away with it. Check out these examples:

1) They illegally included the FDA logo in a "No on 37" mailing to state residents, and made up a quote from the FDA, which  the FDA refuted . The FDA did not and cannot express an opinion on ballot initiatives.

2) They used the  Stanford logo  in TV ads and mailers, when the University also did not take a stand on the issue. And  they said  that Henry I. Miller, their hired gun, is a professor at Stanford when in reality, he works for the Hoover Institution -- which rents office space on the campus.

3) They paid a PR firm with expertise in fighting recycling legislation (on behalf of the soda pop industry) to generate a  misleading "study" that was designed to show the proposition raising food prices by hundreds of dollars per state resident per year. This despite  independent economic analysis  concluding that it would not raise prices in any meaningful way, and that in Europe, mandated labeling  was not linked to an increase in food prices. (Do you really believe the pesticide and junk food companies would spend $46 million trying to save you money?)

4) They said there have never been any documented ill-effects from GMO consumption. But many allege that  37 direct human deaths  and 1,500 disabilities linked to a  toxic batch of the supplement Tryptophan were caused by a genetically engineered strain of bacteria used in production. And there are numerous reports of  livestock that have died  as a result of grazing on GMO cotton. There could be far more widespread ill-effects, but without labeling, it's nearly impossible to find out conclusively. 


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