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After Ballot Defeat, Activists Still Push to Label Genetically Engineered Food

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

On Election Day, Proposition 37 - "The California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act" - was defeated, 52 percent to 48 percent. If it had been approved, California would have been the first state to mandate the labeling of genetically engineered food.

Supporters of the initiative were mostly organic-food proponents hailing from across the country. They have not given up. Since the defeat, they have been spending time picking up the pieces, beginning and continuing similar campaigns in other states, especially Washington.

"We're just calling it Round 1 of the food fight of our lives," said Melinda Suelflow, a campaign coordinator for the Organic Consumers Association. "We're not calling it an all-out defeat. We just lost the last battle."

The Organic Consumers Association, which is based in Minnesota, was simply outspent by the opposition, Suelflow said. Advocates spent $8.7 million in support of Prop 37. The opposition, led by big names such as Monsanto and Pepsico Inc., spent $45.6 million.

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