Update: July 29th, 2016 – President Obama has signed this bill and it is now law.
The Senate voted 63-30 on July 7th, 2016 in favor of a sham GMO labeling bill that stops Vermont’s GMO labeling laws and allows companies to use QR codes instead of words on the package. It discriminates against low income families, minorities, mothers, seniors, the disabled & those without smartphones. The bill is now moving onto the House, and at this point, it appears very likely that it will pass sometime this week, probably today. I know you are upset, I am too. Here’s your 4 step action plan to fight back!
They claim this is an acceptable “GMO label” – but it’s clearly not!
Photo Credit: Consumers Union
There are further questions about whether most GMOs on the market will even be covered by the law because of the tricky language they used to define “bioengineering” – ingredients like soybean oil from Roundup Ready soy and sugar from GMO sugar beets probably won’t be included in the disclosure! Companies also won’t be held liable or get penalized if they don’t comply, so why should they even bother labeling their products accurately?
This bill was clearly written to protect Monsanto, the agrochemical and GMO industries and is a slap in the face of American consumers. Almost ALL OF US want GMOs labeled and Americans are being denied a basic right that dozens of countries, including Russia and China, provide their citizens.
“It is deeply disturbing that a majority in the Senate would support a bill that openly discriminates against America’s low income, rural and elderly populations. This denies them their right to know simply because they are not able to afford or have access to smartphones. The bill itself is poorly drafted and would exempt many and perhaps most current genetically engineered foods from labeling. It was written behind closed doors between a handful of Senators and the big chemical and food companies. It is a non-labeling bill disguised as a labeling bill, a sham and a legislative embarrassment.” – Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director, Center for Food Safety
It is absolutely disgusting that our government leaders care more about the money they receive from corporations than the will of the American people.
Yet, are we really surprised? This is not the first time that the government has failed us. We have seen it time and time again. We can’t look to our government to protect us.
Our government agencies, the FDA, USDA, and EPA have all failed us on so many levels, allowing companies to use and produce dozens of synthetic food additives and agricultural chemicals that are banned or heavily restricted in countries with stronger regulations.
Whether this sham “GMO labeling” bill becomes law or not, we still have the power. Here’s your action plan:
1. Sign this petition to ask President Obama to veto the bill here. President Obama signed the bill on July 29th, 2016 and it’s now law.
2. Spend your money on food companies that label their products clearly and avoid the covert QR codes and 1-800 numbers.
Every single time we spend money on food at the grocery store, farmer’s market, or in a restaurant, we are voting for what we want. Voting with our dollars and hitting the bottom line of the food companies is the best way to get their attention and force change. We’ve got to hit ’em where it hurts! That is their pocketbook. The simple act of voting with our dollars filters down into everyone that is producing our food. Those who are doing the right things will be rewarded – and those that are not will either change their ways or suffer the consequences. Collectively, we have been able to dramatically shape the marketplace into one that is increasing in supply of organic and non-GMO foods, and it is only going to keep improving!
Food companies should be scared to put a shady QR code on their products, because that is soon going to be a big shiny beacon that will make boycotting easy!
The instant you see a QR code on a product, there is no need to scan it. Just the fact that a company is using a QR code is all the information you need to realize that they are a traitor and don’t want to tell you the truth about their food. This is a company that has bought off our politicians and was looking for a way out, and we see right through their BS.
This is what the future holds for these companies (whether they realize it yet or not) and so now they have a very important choice to make.
This also goes for companies like Frito Lay, Campbell’s, General Mills, Mars, Kellogg’s and Lipton who have already started labeling the GMOs in their products. What choice will they make? You can bet I’ll be paying attention.
Going forward, it is as simple as this: QR Code = Put The Product Back Down & Run!
Leave the QR codes on the shelf, and they will pay attention! As always, I believe the safest food that you can buy for yourself and your family is organic. Certified organic food is prohibited from being produced with GMOs, synthetic pesticides are banned, and many of the drugs that are given to farm animals (hormones, antibiotics) are prohibited as well. However, consumers should not be forced to buy organic food to avoid GMOs.
GMO labeling is about transparency and giving consumers a choice.
Don’t we ALL deserve to know exactly what is in our food and how it was produced? Why shouldn’t American consumers be given GMO labels so they can make their own decisions about whether they want to buy food made with GMOs or not? If food companies support GMO technology, why wouldn’t they want to label products that contain them? Why don’t they consider it a badge of honor?
I will not stop raising awareness until everyone has access to safe and healthy food, with clear and accurate labeling.
3. If your local grocery stores do not sell clearly marked non-GMO and organic food, send them a letter like this and ask them to do so – they will carry what you want to buy.
4. Last but not least – Remember, this is a revolution and we are winning!
If you want to be healthy you’ve got to take control!!! No government agency, big food company, or anyone else is going to do it for you. You can’t trust anyone but yourself.
They may be winning the GMO labeling battle, but WE are winning the war! Just look at what we have accomplished so far:
- Even without labels, over 40% of American consumers are avoiding or reducing GMOs in their diet.
- Sales of Non-GMO verified products grew by over $8 billion in 2014, and keep going up.
- Non-GMO food sales have grown to over $200 billion in the U.S. alone, globally to over $550 billion, and are expected to nearly DOUBLE worldwide by 2019.
- Approximately 2,000 new non-GMO products are launched each year in the U.S., up from a few hundred a decade ago.
- The demand for organic food has increased dramatically as well, with essentially double-digit growth every year! Since 1997, organic food sales have grown from $3.6 billion to $43.3 billion in 2015.
- In 2015, the organic food industry saw its biggest growth yet! Organic sales grew 10.8%, more than any other food sector.
- The number of producers of organic food in the U.S. has grown nearly 300% since 2002, making it one of the fastest growing segments of agriculture.
The big food and chemical companies HATE statistics like these.
They hate this because the writing is on the wall that they will continue to lose sales if they don’t remove GMOs from their products and move towards organic. The tipping point is upon us!
I love each and every one of you that have continued to fight for GMO labeling along with me and other activists. The fight is not over yet, but just know that even if our lawmakers fail us, we can still hit them where it hurts and change is on the horizon. Onward!
P.S. Here is the list of Senators that sold out and voted “YES” in favor of the sham GMO labeling bill, so you know who to vote out of office next:
105 responses to “When Congress Screws Us Over On GMO Labeling : The Action Plan To Fight Back!”
1. to farm wife – you bet; not only affarid – TERRIFIED!!!
2. more bad news for Babe’s Army- Santan Monsanto and Dupont have developed new herbicide and spraying now without approval of FDA and EPA. This stuff is worse than RoundUp glycophosephate; it is invisable when sprayed and easily carried by wind and rain to other farmers crops. this chemical is inpenatrateable to being washed off food; just like glycophosphate but worse; as instantly absorbed by the crop.
3. Food Babes Army: listen up real quick; buy Janet Black R.N.,FNP,MSN,MPH latest book “Living In Our Toxic World”; available at AMAZON.com. With this book you will be able to survive our toxic world!!!! As an R.N., I can highly recomend this book. Buy this book ASAP and you will be able to survive.
4.go to http://www.cornucopia.org they have started a shoppers guide so can boycott Organic Trade Association food. They were bullied by Monsanto to fight worthless Dark Act so Monsanto can put organic label on their dangerous GMO food and I mean dangerous; they are endocrine disruptors. Toxic posion period.
This won’t work. There are no provisions in the GMO bill to enforce and punish any food company that fails to comply. There are words in the bill that say “enforcement” but a law without a punishment for violating that law is not a law. The USDA can request records of any food company, sit down and have a nice friendly “hearing” and then if they want, can report about it. So all these food companies – all of them – can just do nothing if they want. They can refuse to label any product and no government agency has the power to punish them for refusing to comply. This bill is a fraud through and through.
Additionally, products made via gene editing (CRISPR, for example) are exempt. So are products that are made via RNAi, most likely, for similar reasons. Moreover, there is nothing to stop other companies that have nothing to do with GMOs from putting a QR code on their label at some point. Stop relying on false hopes. We need a food revolution and it will not happen without massive political change, so political activism must be part of that. Clearly, the supporters of the GMO bill in Congress have a blatant disregard for science, truth, ethics, reason, logic and the will of the American people. They accuse opponents of anti-science while throwing snowballs on the Senate floor to prove climate change isn’t real. They are the embodiment of corruption, ignorance and greed for power and have a disdain for true science and facts – they are driven only by a desire to appease their corporate masters and will say anything and do anything, including violating their oath of office by not representing their constituents, but instead represent the will of corporate “personhoods.”
I did what you said and contacted my senator and this is her response.
August 2, 2016
Dear Mr. Waterman,
Thank you for contacting me regarding the labeling of genetically engineered (GE) food. I share your concerns and believe that there must be a uniform federal standard that provides consumers with easy access to accurate information regarding the products they purchase.
On March 1, 2016, the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee held a business meeting to review Chairman Roberts’ GE labeling bill. As you know, Chairman Roberts’ bill would create a voluntary labeling standard for foods containing GE ingredients and would preempt state laws that require labeling of GE food or seeds. This bill would also call for a U.S. Department of Agriculture education campaign to promote consumer acceptance of biotechnology. While this bill passed out of committee by a vote of 14-6, I did not vote in support of Chairman Roberts’ proposal.
I believe that GE products can play an important role in combating world hunger, increasing agricultural productivity, and improving the nutritional content of certain foods. I do, however, believe that we should develop a national mandatory labeling standard that allows consumers to make informed decisions. For this reason, I am a cosponsor of the Biotechnology Food Labeling Uniformity Act (S.2621), which would require food manufactures to disclose the presence of GE ingredients on the nutrition facts panel by choosing from one of four labeling options approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This bill balances the interests of consumers and producers by making certain that consumers have access to clear information about GE ingredients and ensuring that food manufacturers have regulatory certainty from the FDA when complying with a single labeling standard.
Thank you again for writing to express your concerns, and I hope that you keep in touch with my office regarding future legislation and concerns you may have. For more information on this and other important issues, please visit my website at http://gillibrand.senate.gov and sign up for my e-newsletter.
United States Senator
I guess you don’t have to be smarter than a 5th grader to know GMO’s are horrible for the human body! Enough studies are out there to prove they are making us sick, fat and full of disease. I read studies where they are using human cells and cells of fish (salmon) and putting them in plants. FRANKENFOOD!! This is so unnatural it can’t be good for you. People wake up! Open your eyes before it’s too late! Start thinking for yourself and stop following others. I support my local farmers, they grow organic food, meats, fruits and veggies that are NOT GMO. I have my grandkids health to think about. I didn’t grow up with GMO’s and my children didn’t. But my grandkids are surrounded with it. I will do my part keeping them safe from GMO’s and all you grandparents out there should do the same.
Dear Kirsten , You seriously believe that GMO food can ” increasing agricultural productivity” ? Explain to me how spraying tons of pesticides AND herbicides is healthy for anyone or anything? You also stated GMO food can “and improving the nutritional content of certain foods”….. what is wrong with good organic grown food? I don’t want artificial sludge.
Vani-my senator from Nevada, Dean Heller, sent me a standard from letter full of crap about how he “cares” but got out of getting in trouble by failing to show for the vote! They are all bought and paid for. Absolutely no democracy any more…. Just disgusting.
Is anyone putting together a list of companies/ products to boycott so we can take it to the store with us, like the clean/dirty 15? Something like the “Franken- food”-kill you fast 200? Bless you Vani. One person can teuly change the world.
A devoted follower
I am very disappointed and hurt that the president signed this bill. I will continue to buy products labeled as Non GMO and organic, and I will continue discussing this issue and encouraging those I know to make their voices heard through the products they purchase.
Living in Illinois, Kirk of course was one of the traitors that voted Yes. Our other senator, Richard Durbin, voted No, proving who is worth keeping, and with Kirk facing the battle of his life against the enormously popular Tammy Duckworth for that Senate seat this election, here’s hoping we can give that traitor the boot, and have two Democratic senators to represent our state.
I wrote all the companies whose products I buy which are organic telling them I would immediately stop buying their products if they used GMO ingredients. Of course they can sneak them in but I will continue to read labels. I even wrote companies who have organic brands but are not known for being organic like Campbells soup even though I don’t buy those products. Companies will only listen when their profits drop. That can only happen when people wake up and stop giving them their money. I also wrote many of the senators not only in my state of Nv. but other states as well stating their vote clearly showed they were bought and paid for by Monsanto. Hopefully the people in the states who have Senators that are bought and paid off will open their mouths and tell everyone through social media.