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Judge in Frito-Lay Lawsuit Refuses to Refer GMO/natural Issue to FDA

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

In the 2nd major development this week in the debate over whether foods made with GMO's can be labeled 'natural', a NY judge handling a multi-district lawsuit vs Frito-Lay says she will not refer the matter to the FDA, as her counterparts have done in similar cases vs Gruma Corp and General Mills.

Frito-Lay North America had argued that the lawsuit - which alleges it deceived consumers with 'all natural' claims on Tostitos, SunChips and Fritos Bean Dips made with GMOs- should be dismissed pursuant to the primary jurisdiction doctrine, or at least put it on ice while the FDA decides if GMOs belong in 'all-natural' foods.

But US district Judge Roslynn R. Mauskopf disagreed.

Frito-Lay's request to dismiss, or stay, this action for the FDA to address whether foods containing bioengineered ingredients may be labeled 'natural' is unwarranted

In her August 29 order on case - which consolidates actions filed in multiple state - she said the judicial system was more than capable of addressing whether Frito-Lay has marketed products in a way that could mislead a reasonable consumer.