BIO Statement on Connecticut GE Food Labeling Bill
Washington, D.C. (June 26, 2013) – Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy signed into law today, PA 13-183, the GMO food labeling bill. Connecticut is the first state to require the special labeling of foods containing genetically modified ingredients.
Before being implemented, the law will require four northeast states, (not including Connecticut) one of which is contiguous with Connecticut to pass similar labeling legislation, and the population of the northeast states must exceed 20 million based on 2010 census data, a recognition by the legislators that law will have negative impacts on Connecticut’s economy. The law will take effect on October 1, of the year after the trigger requirements are reached.
Cathleen Enright, Executive Vice President for Food and Agriculture for the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) issued the following statement in response:
“BIO does not support attempts to label food in a way that misleads consumers. Mandatory labeling suggests there is a difference in safety or nutrition between biotech food and organic food, when there is none.
“According to the American Medical Association, there is ‘no justification for special labeling of bio-engineered foods.’ The United States Food and Drug Administration maintains there is no difference in safety between foods produced with biotechnology and those produced by conventional means. The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the most prestigious scientific organization in the United States believes, ‘Legally mandating such a label can only serve to mislead and falsely alarm consumers.’
“The biotech industry fully supports the voluntary labeling of products to meet specific demands of consumers in the marketplace. We believe that existing labeling programs accomplish this without placing additional burden on a particular state or that state’s small businesses.”