Organic Consumers Association

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Word on the Street: What Do You Think About the GMO Labeling Initiative?

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Genetic Engineering page, Millions Against Monsanto page, and our California News page.
It seems like every trip to the grocery store includes an invitation to sign initiatives. As a reminder, initiatives are ballot propositions where a minimum number of petition signatures will force a ballot vote. California is one of 24 states that allow the initiative process, and many groups are currently collecting signatures for various ballot initiatives, hoping to gain enough to qualify for the state ballot in November. One of these initiatives, the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, requires labeling of produce and packaged food containing genetically engineered ingredients. Currently, some foods may carry the label "non-gmo" and may be certified by third party organizations. However, this is a voluntary measure.

We wandered around town this week asking what regular folks think about the prospect of seeing foods labeled in this way. Here's the word on the street:

"I think GMOs should be labeled because people have a right to know what they're eating. We should be able to opt out if we want to. If GMO proponents believe there is no harm in creating & consuming these organisms, then they shouldn't care whether GMOs are labeled or not." - Katie, frequents Hollywood and Santa Monica Farmer's Markets

"I absolutely would support the labeling of foods that come from or include GMOs. In recent years, I have become very conscious of paying attention to where my food comes from and how it's labeled, but also how misleading those labels often can be. My pet peeve label of late is beef that's labeled "vegetarian fed" vs. "grass fed" - there's a huge difference! I would want to know the standard by which the labels are defined, too.
 -Chantel, frequents Culver City Farmer's Market

"I think it is a great idea to get food labeled so we know if things are being genetically engineered. I have not always been so conscious of these things, but as I get older and now have a child, I want to know exactly what I am putting in my body so that I can make an informed decision." -Emily, frequents Culver City Farmer's Market
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