GM Labeling Bill Passes House, Goes to President

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Several organizations representing the U.S. seed industry, agribusiness and farmers welcomed today’s passage by the House of the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard — common sense legislation that will provide a transparent, uniform national food disclosure standard while protecting consumers, farmers and small businesses from the harmful consequences of a confusing and costly patchwork of state labeling mandates.

“We applaud Chairman Conaway and Roberts, Ranking Members Peterson and Stabenow, Congressmen Pompeo and Butterfield, and all the Republicans and Democrats in both the House and Senate who put politics aside and came together to do what’s right for American families and farmers,” says Andy LaVigne, American Seed Trade Association president and CEO. “Failure to do so would have had long-term, irreversible consequences on our nation’s food supply chain.

“Genetic engineering is one of a wide array of safe and important tools plant breeders use to address global challenges. Thanks to this bill, products produced through this method will not be unfairly stigmatized with mandatory on-pack labels.”

The National Corn Growers Association also praised the U.S. House of Representatives for its vote passing S. 764. Particularly, the association praised Chairmen Conaway and Roberts, Ranking Members Peterson and Stabenow, Congressmen Pompeo and Butterfield, and all of the members of Congress, from both sides of the aisle, who worked together to pass this bill.

The bill now heads to the President to be signed. Yesterday (July 13), President Obama indicated that we would signed the bill.

NCGA now calls upon President Obama to quickly sign this bill into law, thus avoiding the negative impacts of Vermont’s law.

“Today, our representatives in the House built upon last week’s work in the Senate, taking another important step toward bringing consistency to the marketplace,” says Chip Bowling, NCGA president and a farmer from Maryland. “This achievement was made possible as members of the food and agricultural value chain came together as never before to advance a solution that works for farmers, food companies and, most importantly, consumers …

“Now that both houses of Congress have come together to address this important issue, we ask that the President take the final step by signing this legislation into law.”

America’s corn farmers, along with other family farmers across the country, rely on agricultural biotechnology to meet the demand of an ever-growing global population, while reducing their impact on the environment. The bill passed today ensures that mandatory, on-pack labels do not place an unwarranted stigma on safe, proven technology.

ASTA and NCGA, working with partners across the value chain, have pushed for a solution to this issue for more than two years now as members of the Coalition for Safe Affordable Food. For more information on the need for a federal labeling standard, visit the Coalition for Safe Affordable Food, at www.CFSAF.org.

 

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