(Posted Fri. Jun 24th, 2016)
The National Corn Growers Association today thanked Senate Agriculture Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and ranking Democrat Debbie Stabenow of Michigan for their work to put forth the agreement announced today that will address the growing threat of a patchwork of state labeling laws. NCGA strongly urges that the Senate and House both act as swiftly as possible to pass this important legislation.
“The introduction of this solution comes at a critical time when Congress must act to restore sanity to America’s food labeling laws,” said National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, a farmer from Maryland. “GMOs are perfectly safe and America’s farmers rely on this proven technology to protect our crops from insects, weeds and drought. Important food safety and labeling decisions should be made by qualified policymakers, not political activists and campaigns. Yet, despite the scientific evidence, Vermont will place into effect a costly, confusing mandatory labeling legislation, and other states will follow in rapid succession.
“It is imperative that the Senate and House both take up this issue immediately to avoid a situation in which all American consumers pay a high price and gain little actual information.”
Vermont’s mandatory law requiring on-package labels of foods containing ingredients that have been genetically modified takes effect in July, and unless Congress acts now, families, farmers and food companies will face chaos in the market and higher costs. Multiple studies have shown that the associated costs with Vermont’s GMO-labeling law and a subsequent patchwork of state laws will cost American families hundreds of dollars more in groceries each year – with low-income Americans being hit the hardest.
The Roberts-Stabenow agreement brings continuity to the marketplace, ensuring that consumers have the access to product information they deserve without stigmatizing this safe, proven technology valued by American farmers.
NCGA, working with partners across the value chain, has pushed for a solution to this issue for more than two years now as a member 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.