The ASA quoted an economic study that shows an average family of four would pay about $500 more per year for groceries under mandatory GMO labeling schemes being considered in some states.
The NCGA chimed in with its understanding and beliefs about the bill. “In setting out a federal labeling system, it reaffirms the FDA as the nation’s authority for the use and labeling of GMO food ingredients while providing consumers greater confidence by establishing a required FDA safety review process for all new GMO traits. Notably, the FDA would have the authority to mandate the labeling of any GMO food ingredients it determines would create a health, safety or nutrition issue.
“The legislation would also empower the FDA to provide greater consistency in the market by defining the term ‘natural’ for its use on food and beverage products. The clear definition of this commonly used term would offer consumers clarity about products allowing them to base choices on information verified instead of marketing claims.”
Each of the organizations praised the bipartisan sponsors of the House bill—Reps. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Jim Matheson (D-Utah) and Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.).
The champions of H.R. 4432 were identified as Reps. Pompeo and Butterfield. ASA President Gaesser said, “Congressmen Pompeo and Butterfield and each of the sponsors of this bill have taken a brave and progressive step. The conversation surrounding GMOs is one that has been crowded with misinformation and hyperbole on all sides, but at its core it must be about science.
“The Congressmen realize that my fellow farmers and I use these (biotechnology) tools—each of which represents a revolutionary and proven-safe scientific advance—to be more productive while consuming fewer resources. They are to be commended for pursuing a science-based step forward on GMOs, and we call on the Energy and Commerce Committee to move forward with hearings on the bill as quickly as possible.”