Organic Consumers Association

Campaigning for health, justice, sustainability, peace, and democracy

Who Opposes GMO Labeling?

Biotech corporations and junk food manufacturers spent over $400 million to defeat GMO labeling initiatives and proposed laws. They hired the best public relations firms money could buy, to create slick campaigns to convince consumers to vote against their own best interests.

One of the biggest but perhaps most convincing lies Monsanto and Big Food perpetuated was that mandatory labeling laws would result in higher costs for manufacturers, who would then have to pass those costs on to consumers.

It simply was not true. In anticipation of having to comply with Vermont's law (before Congress preempted it), numerous companies, including Campbell's, began printing the words "produced with genetic engineering" on product labels—and they did so at no extra cost to consumers. 

Most of the corporations that opposed GMO labeling laws are (or were at the time) members of the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA)—Monsanto’s Evil Twin. The GMA broke campaign finance laws in order to defeat GMO labeling initiatives, sued Vermont to overturn its GMO labeling law, and wrote the bill that ultimately preempted Vermont's law.

Want to boycott the food companies that opposed GMO labeling? There's an App for that! 

Learn how to download the Buycott app, and sign up for the campaign here.

Download the Buycott App and subscribe to our “Pro-GMO? Or Pro-Right to Know?” campaign to help you choose products that regenerate your health and the environment. Once you've joined the campaign, you can use this app to scan food products in order to learn who the parent company of each brand is, and where that company stands in the GMO labeling fight.

If you don't have a smartphone, you can still join the campaign online here.

Here are the companies that funded the defeat of GMO ballot initiatives in California (2012), Washington (2013), Oregon (2014) and Colorado (2014):

DonorNo On 37No on 522No on 92No on 105Total
Monsanto Co.$8,112,867$5,374,411$5,958,750$4,755,878$24,201,906
Grocery Manufacturers Association$2,002,000$11,000,000$169,190$106,600$13,277,790
Coca-Cola North America$1,690,500$1,520,351$1,170,000$1,108,000$5,488,851
DOW Agrosciences$2,000,000$591,654$1,157,150$306,500$4,055,304
Kraft Foods$2,000,500$0.00$870,000$1,030,000$3,900,500
General Mills$1,230,300$869,271$695,000$820,000$3,614,571
Nestle USA$1,461,600$1,528,206$0.00$0.00$2,989,806
ConAgra Foods$1,176,700$828,251$350,000$250,000$2,604,951
Bayer CropScience$2,000,000$591,654$0.00$0.00$2,591,654
BASF Plant Science$2,000,000$500,000$0.00$0.00$2,500,000
Syngenta Corporation$2,000,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$2,000,000
Land O'Lakes$153,300$144,878$760,000$900,000$1,958,178
Kellogg's Company$790,700$322,050$500,000250,000$1,862,750
Hershey Company$518,900$360,450$320,000$380,000$1,579,350
Smucker Company$555,000$349,978$295,000$345,000$1,544,978
Mondelez International$181,000$210,336$720,000$0.00$1,111,336
Bimbo Bakeries$422,900$137,460$230,000270,000$1,060,360
Smithfield Foods$683,900$0.00$0.00$250,000$933,900
Abbott Nutrition$334,500$185,025$160,000$190,000$869,525
Delmonte Foods$674,100$125,677$0.00$0.00$799,777
Hormel Foods$467,900$76,803$85,00085,000$714,703
Flowers Foods$182,100$205,099$0.00$250,000$637,199
Biotechnology Industry Organization$502,000$0.0011,200$108,000$621,200
Ocean Spray Cranberries$409,100$80,295$35,00080,000$604,395
Bumble Bee Foods$420,600$52,365$45,000$50,000$567,965
McCormick & Company$248,200$148,369$130,000$0.00$526,569
Heinz Company$500,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$500,000
Mars Inc.$498,350$0.00$0.00$0.00$498,350
Pinnacle Foods Group$266,100$175,425$0.00$0.00$441,525
Dean Foods$253,950$174,553$0.00$0.00$428,503
Council for Biotechnology Information$375,000$0.00$12,827$0.00$387,827
Bunge North America$248,600$137,896$0.00$0.00$386,496
Hilshire Brands Company$85,900$282,775$0.00$0.00$368,675
Sara Lee Corporation$343,600$0.00$0.00$0.00$343,600
Rich Products Corporation$248,300$34,911$30,000$0.00$313,211
Welch Foods$167,000$41,893$30,000$35,000$273,893
Knouse Foods$167,600$20,946$20,000$25,000$233,546
Sunny Delight Beverages$139,700$30,547$25,000$25,000$220,247
Mead Johnson Nutrition Company$80,000$0.00$50,000$50,000$180,000
Dole Packaged Foods$175,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$175,000
Clement Pappas & Co.$100,000$30,547$0.00$0.00$130,547
Wrigley Jr. Company$123,350$0.00$0.00$0.00$123,350
Tree Top Inc.$110,600$0.00$0.00$0.00$110,600
Shearer's Foods$0.00$36,656$30,000$35,000$101,656
Hero North America$80,800$0.00$0.00$0.00$80,800
Faribault Foods$76,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$76,000
Solae Inc.$62,500$0.00$0.00$0.00$62,500
Clorox Company$39,700$17,455$0.00$0.00$57,155
Goya Foods$56,700$0.00$0.00$0.00$56,700
McCain Foods USA$53,400$0.00$0.00$0.00$53,400
Bruce Foods$38,500$4,364$0.00$0.00$42,864
Godiva Chocolatier$42,700$0.00$0.00$0.00$42,700
B&G Foods$40,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$40,000
Michael Foods$0.00$0.00$30,000$0.00$30,000
C.H. Guenther & Son$24,700$0.00$0.00$0.00$24,700
Morton Salt$21,400$0.00$0.00$0.00$21,400
Reily Foods Company$18,400$0.00$0.00$0.00$18,400
Inventure Foods$15,600$0.00$0.00$0.00$15,600
Hirzel Canning Company$15,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$15,000
Idahoan Foods$10,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$10,000
Niagara Bottling$0.00$0.00$0.00$10,000$10,000
Sargento Foods$10,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$10,000
Snack Foods Association$10,000$0.00$0.00$0.00$10,000

Data sources:

California SOS Campaign Finance: NO ON 37

Washington SOS Campaign Finance: NO ON 522

GMA Member donations to NO ON 522

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