A coalition of nearly 400 businesses and organizations has delivered a petition to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) calling for the mandatory labeling of genetically engineered (GE) foods.
While the vast majority of corn and soy grown in the US was from GE seeds, packaged foods containing ingredients made from these crops were not labeled accordingly, said Andrew Kimbrell, executive director of the Center for Food Safety and lead author of the petition.
"We are asking the FDA to change a decade's old and out of touch policy. Today's consumers are more informed than ever, and they have a right to know about the foods they are purchasing and consuming. We want the FDA to require labeling on foods intentionally produced using genetic engineering."
Stonyfield Farm chief executive Gary Hirshberg added: "While our reasons for wanting to know what is in our food may vary, the one thing no one can debate is that it is our right to know.”
As the law stands, the FDA does not require additional labeling about production methods (such as genetic engineering) if the resulting products are not “materially different” from their conventional counterparts as a result.
In a recent guidance document about GE labeling, the FDA said: “The FDA has no basis for concluding that bioengineered foods differ from other foods in any meaningful or uniform way, or that, as a class, foods developed by the new techniques present any different or greater safety concern than foods developed by traditional plant breeding.”
For a complete list of the members of the coalition, click here .
To find out more about the Just Label It campaign, click here .