Bills Target Genetically Engineered Food In Florida

January 21, 2014

A South Florida Democrat has filed a bill that would impose labeling requirements to make sure consumers know they are buying genetically engineered foods.

By January 1, 2016, the bill would require the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to annually publish a list of commercially grown agricultural commodities that are genetically engineered. By that date, it also would require manufacturers, processors, packers or distributors to make clear on labels that their products include genetically engineered food or ingredients.

The bill says, in part, that the “vast majority of the public desires notice” before eating genetically engineered food. “(Labeling) of genetically engineered foods can provide a critical method for tracking the potentially dangerous health effects of consuming genetically engineered foods,” the bill says.

A similar proposal has been filed in the Florida House.

Comments

20 Responses to “Bills Target Genetically Engineered Food In Florida”

  1. janice parker on January 25th, 2014 7:57 am

    In addition to GMO’s in our food, they also spray potatoes with a chemical to stop them from sprouting. And God only knows what else they do to our food.

  2. Sara Nussel on January 23rd, 2014 7:50 pm

    I know a woman who is so allergic to GMO soy that she has to wear gloves when she goes to the mail box. Most flyers and circulars are printed with soy based ink. In response to Jimmie’s comments, no fruits or vegetables are genetically modified except for papayas and some yellow squash. Most grocers do not carry them, still I buy mostly organic to be on the safe side. Most GMOs are in processed foods (candies, cereals, crackers, mixes, etc.) in Europe and Asia these products would be labelled as containing genetically modified ingredients. No extra cost to the manufacturer. They change their labels all the time. Many Americans and their doctors have solved the mystery of their illnesses. They are GMO related. A famous model was recently interviewed for Elle magazine about her health problems. In it she recounts her painful journey to finally discover that GMO corn was the problem. She is deathly allergic to this stuff and it’s in everything! Folks like her need to know what ingredients are in their food. Right now the main way to avoid GMOs is to buy organic or foods labelled non-GMO. What do the Obamas, the Romneys, the Clintons and the Bushes have in common? Not their politics! No, it’s more basic than that. These families all eat organic. No stinking GMOs on their dinner tables. You and I are supposed to eat the GMO junk so that we can support Monsanto’s bottom line! Not this chick.

  3. Trish on January 22nd, 2014 7:51 am

    For health reasons, many families ‘needs’ to know if a product contains a genetically modified ingredient. Without labels, how will we know if it contains such ingredients?

    60+ countries ban or have mandatory labeling of GE crops. The same top 5 food manufacturers in this country must label for these other countries why not here in the US?

    I need to know if it’s gmo. If it’s not on the label, how can we have traceability transparency … where is the accountability if someones child gets sick from these ingredients that can be highly allergenic?

  4. REBECCA WERHER~MUNGO on January 22nd, 2014 7:29 am

    I would love to see GMOs eliminated. But, at the very least~ they need to be labeled!!

  5. Mel on January 21st, 2014 9:12 pm

    The bill is in agreement with most health groups.

    British Medical Association, “GM foodstuffs should be segregated at source, to enable identification and traceability of GM products. This is important as there are considerable doubts about the behaviour of GMOs once they are released into the environment, and this will also facilitate monitoring in the interests of public health. It is unacceptable that at present some GM and non-GM products are mixed at source, and are not adequately labelled. ”

    Illinois Public Health Association : “lack of labeling denies health professionals the ability to trace potential toxic [1] or allergic reactions [2] [3] [4] to, and other adverse health effects [5] [6] [7] from, genetically engineered food”

    American Public Health Association(APHA) : “APHA declare its support that any food product containing genetically modified organisms be so labeled.”

    National Environmental Health Association(NEHA) : “NEHA declare its support for the “understandable” labeling of any food product that contains GMOs”

    California Medical Association(CMA) : “the CMA support accurate labeling requirements for foods, including genetically modified foods, by appropriate regulatory agencies.”

    American College of Physicians : “the Board of Regents supports legislation and/or federal regulatory action which requires all foods containing genetically engineered ingredients to be clearly labeled.”

    Public Health Association of Australia, “The labelling system should be improved to the standards desired by consumers, so that consumers can easily identify foods containing ingredients originating from GM animals and plants”

  6. David Huie Green on January 21st, 2014 9:06 pm

    CONSIDERING:
    “2) many GMO foods have been modified to “resist” glyphosate, meaning they can be and are, in fact, over-sprayed with that toxic substance, which they take-up in quantity and then make available in our digestive tracts”

    Plants have been modified to resist weed killers.
    This allows cultivation without excessive tillage, fuel consumption, air pollution and use of more toxic herbicides.
    Less artificial chemicals are introduced into the ecosystem.

    AND
    “allowing multi-national corporations to own patents on life forms and these life forms are replacing and eliminating natural plants and small farmers across the country and around the world and”

    An interesting thing about a patent is that it is made known to the public and expires after a number of years.
    For example, the patent for Roundup expired already and anybody can make it.
    Roundup and its generics have extremely low toxicity and are broken down by bacteria and other processes unless they bind to soil, which they do easily, in which case they are effectively neutralized immediately.

    AND
    “4) there is scientific proof GMO yields are less than organic.”

    So farmers are spending more money to make less money?
    And the ones who are making less money are pushing out the ones who use more money-making seeds?

    Like most conspiracy theories this one breaks down in that nobody really benefits from the conspiracy. That and the idea that people want to kill themselves and all those they love to die richer sooner.

    David for better living
    through biology

  7. Alison on January 21st, 2014 6:31 pm

    We should have the freedom to choose whether we buy and eat GMO foods. We are shouldn’t have to be science experiments. With more and more GMO products flooding the market we can’t sit by and not give consumers the right to choose.

    It doesn’t cost anymore to label foods. Labels change all the time.

    It’s time to stand up to what’s right for our families and demand that we be able to make informed choices.

  8. Jan on January 21st, 2014 5:52 pm

    There really doesn’t need to be much debate on whether organic tastes better or is better for you. All anyone needs to do is find out for themselves. Eat organic, non-GMO foods exclusively for a week and see how many of your health issues go away, or remain, or become worse. Then you don’t need to take anyone else’s word for it–no doctor, no scientist, no politician can give you the kind of valid information/feedback that your own body can. Forour family, eating organic and totally avoiding GMO solved many health issues, including arthritis, asthma, attention “disorder,” gastrointestinal discomfort, weight gain and more. If we eat GMO by mistake–our bodies let us know pretty much immediately.

  9. Jan on January 21st, 2014 5:45 pm

    Jimmy, this movement is not pushed by “politicians,” as you surely must well know. Politicians would not, most of them, get involved in the GMO debate given a choice. This is a people driven movement which politicians have long either tried to ignore or to actively squelch, if they are on the payroll of the Big Food and Biotech companies, which many of them are. You can attest that American fruits and vegetables taste better here in America? Well, most of them are not yet genetically modified, so there you go. Let’s keep it that way.

    GMO crops so far: sugar beet, corn, canola, cotton, soy, some papaya and squash. GMO tomatoes were taken off the market long ago, because they
    tasted like cardboard. The first GMO apples are ready for the market, called arctic apples, if you want to test/avoid them.

  10. James Green on January 21st, 2014 4:46 pm

    Labeling doesn’t cost anything. Companies change their packaging on a regular basis anyway. The only reason cost would increase is if every food company suddenly decided to go non-GMO all at once to avoid labeling. In that case, prices would stabilize rather quickly anyway, as farmers would stop growing GM crops that no one would buy.

  11. Rashell on January 21st, 2014 4:44 pm

    While I agree that a labeling law should not be handled at the federal level, it certainly can and should be handled at the state level. This is not a Democrat or Republican issue! This is about a basic human right to know what is in the food that you are eating or feeding to your children! The big agricultural industry that created GMO’s would not exist had it not been for big government. Billions of dollars subsidize these huge agribusinesses, such as Monsanto, with YOUR tax dollars.

  12. Jennifer Ehrenfried on January 21st, 2014 2:20 pm

    I’m so glad these bills have been introduced in both chambers. However, they will never make it out committee and brought to the floor for a vote without a lot of pressure from the public. If you think you have a right to know and choose, call or write members of the agriculture committees and make sure they know how you feel. There have been numerous polls indicating the “vast majority of the public desires notice”. It has also been my personal experience as I have started talking to people about GE foods. Labeling gives the public a tool to make informed choices. It also gives the scientific community a tool to track the effects of these products. It doesn’t raise costs- product labels are changed routinely for looks, to promote the latest trend (gluten free!), changing the size and shape of the packaging, etc. These GE products have been patented which means they have shown they are fundamentally new and different than anything else on the market. That information should not be withheld from the consumer.

  13. Lynne on January 21st, 2014 1:28 pm

    If you want to avoid GMO crops, buy organic. For those of us who want to maintain affordable food that has been tested and approved by FDA and EPA, I am happy to enjoy foods that have been grown using less pesticides, which it the oputcome of currently approved GMOs.

  14. Brenda Smith on January 21st, 2014 1:06 pm

    I want to avoid genetically modified organisms in the foods I use because: 1) they have not been proven to be “substantially equivalent” to natural organisms but only described as such by the corporations who profit from them, 2) many GMO foods have been modified to “resist” glyphosate, meaning they can be and are, in fact, over-sprayed with that toxic substance, which they take-up in quantity and then make available in our digestive tracts, 3) they represent a dangerous and hard-to-reverse trend toward allowing multi-national corporations to own patents on life forms and these life forms are replacing and eliminating natural plants and small farmers across the country and around the world and 4) there is scientific proof GMO yields are less than organic. The movement to require GMO informational labeling is growing and will likely someday be successful in the United States as it is already in other developed nations. It would do Florida proud to be one of the early States to require such honest food labeling.

  15. EMD on January 21st, 2014 9:52 am

    Not more government, but CHOICE.

  16. Rob on January 21st, 2014 9:32 am

    No one asked me.

    I don’t really care if its modified or not. Everyone complains about the cost of food going up. One of the aspects of genetically modified vegetables is that they can be made easier to grow. More supply decreases cost.

  17. bill on January 21st, 2014 8:35 am

    What is wrong with freedom of choice? The bill does not outlaw GM produce it just makes the seller label it as such so the consumer has the knowledge to pick a product that remains the way God designed it and those who want GM products can buy them.

  18. David Huie Green on January 21st, 2014 7:34 am

    Genetically modified food tastes best.

    David for shrimp genes
    in the strawberries

  19. 429SCJ on January 21st, 2014 5:31 am

    The Lord designed everything with a plan. If you look at nature, the flora and fauna all reproduce in nature according to God’s plan. Man has hybridized his own species, modified the plants and animals he consumes at the genetic level, without the slightest regard to the consequences.

    I want to keep my self and my descendants as free from contamination as possible. I do not believe that God wants his creations modified.

    To the south Florida Democrat I say keep up the good fight as it is satan’s plan to damage all that God has designed.

  20. Jimmy on January 21st, 2014 4:20 am

    I’m curious what study or studies suggest the “vast majority of the public desires notice.”

    So now RoundUp Ready Corn, Soybeans, etc. will require labeling? As someone who travels internationally, I can attest that the fruits, vegetables, and meats American consumers enjoy taste far better and are much larger in size compared to European non-genetically enhanced products. This bill is a great example of politicians and government involving themselves into aspects of the public life where they have no business. Great job Democrats! More big government!





Have a comment on this story?

We welcome your comments on this story, but there are some rules to follow::

(1) Be Nice. No comments that slander another, no racism, no sexism, no personal attacks.

(2) No Harrassing Comments. If someone says something bad about you, don't respond. That's childish.

(3) No Libel. That's saying something is not true about someone. Don't do it.

(4) Keep it clean. Nothing vulgar, obscene or sexually related. No profanity or obvious substitutions. Period.

(5) NorthEscambia.com reserves the right to remove any comments that violate our rules or we think to be inappropriate. We are not responsible for what is posted. Comments may not appear right away until they are approved by a moderator.

(6) Limit your comments to the subject in this story only, and limit comments to 300 words or less. Do not post copyrighted material. Comments will not be added to stories that are over 30 days old.

(7) No posts may advertise a commercial business or political group, or link to another commercial web site or political site of any kind.