Organic Consumers Association

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New GMO Label Rules Don't Use the Term GMO

Remember this word: Bioengineered.

It's the term the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has settled on for food labels that will indicate the presence of genetically modified organisms or GMOs in our food. In a final rule published earlier this month, the Agricultural Marketing Service arm of the USDA spelled out the new national mandatory food disclosure standard for bioengineered or BE foods.

It will require "food manufacturers, importers, and other entities that label foods for retail sale to disclose information about BE food and BE food ingredients. This rule is intended to provide a mandatory uniform national standard for disclosure of information to consumers about the BE status of foods. Establishment and implementation of the new Standard is required by an amendment to the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946."

The use of the word bioengineered, which must be fully implemented by large and small food manufacturers by Jan. 21, 2022, is not surprising.

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