My representative, Tulsi Gabbard (D) Hawaii is disappointed in the new GMO labeling bill (S. 764) being sent to Obama for signature.  It doesn't meet her desire for:

"...transparent, easy-to-read labeling of foods with genetically modified (GMO) ingredients, so that people can make their own informed decisions about the food they’re buying and eating."

Except "people" don't "make their own informed decisions" with a simple label.

They vaguely recall the scaremongering of NGOs and celebrities who fear anything man-made.  GMO foods have uniformly been reviewed by agencies and reputable scientific organizations to not present a risk of harm to human health.  But that's too boring compared to the headlines on "Frankenfoods!"  The label will simply tell them: BE AFRAID (or we wouldn't require this label).  At least a QR might allow some communication of context and "informing" to occur, if anyone bothers to look.


We'll see what kind of hit the Hawaiian GMO papaya and other GMO foods take.  I expect the only beneficiaries will be those "organic" food sellers who crank up their profit margins on their "non-GMO" products and doctors who will make money dealing with those freaked out by the labels.  And the lawyers.

At best there will be consistent national labeling, sorta.  And perhaps it will become as ignored as the ubiquitous Prop 65 warnings.

But why stop there?  We should require labeling of toxics/poisons that naturally occur in food, too, because we have a right to know:

Potatoes contain solanine, arsenic, and chaconine. Lima beans contain hydrogen cyanide, a classic suicide substance. Carrots contain carototoxin, a nerve poison. And nutmeg, black pepper, and carrots all contain the hallucinogenic compound myristicin.

I'd much rather support a "Right to Understand" law - where we teach people how to interpret scientific studies and the meaning of risk vs perceived risk.

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