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The simple idea that people have a right to know about GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) in their food has been on a long and rocky road – a road which, for better or for worse, is nearing its end. The question of where it ends will be decided in the coming months.
Over the past few years, the struggle for labeling has reached states from Maine to California. GMO labeling has been ushered in by citizens with great fanfare onto state ballots, only to be squashed by an influx in special interest money convincing citizens that they don’t need – and consequentially don’t deserve – to know about GMOs in their food.
Regardless of setbacks, a movement of concerned citizens has continued to build, and most recently fell just 900 votes short of labeling GMOs in Oregon.
Meanwhile, in Vermont…
While many grassroots ballot initiatives such as those in Oregon have come close to ensuring transparency in the food we eat, none have achieved what the state of Vermont has. Thanks to a burgeoning group of devoted Vermonters, and strong leadership, the state is poised to implement the nation's first ever mandatory GMO labeling law, which was signed in by Governor Peter Shumlin in 2014.
The law, slated to go into effect in July of this year, would require the labeling of food containing GMO ingredients. Simply put, it would give people the right to know what type of food they’re spending they're feeding themselves and their families.
Back at the Big Food Camp
While the big food industry used millions of dollars to convince Oregonians that they have no need to know about GMOs in their food, they couldn’t quite pull off the same in Vermont. They couldn’t pay their way to prevent the law in the New England state, so now they’re changing their tactics: instead, they're trying to undermine it.
And thus, we introduce to you the DARK act – at least, that’s how many in the movement refer to it. The ‘Deny Americans the Right to Know’ act has one goal: to stop states – like Vermont and others – from taking control over their right to know about GMOs.
This new law would – just months before the implementation of Governor Shumlin’s landmark law – take away Vermont’s right to implement labeling. This is a sad last ditch effort by the big food industry to keep us in the dark (pun intended) about GMOs.
The End of the Road
If Vermont labels GMOs – the DARK Act has little chance of resurging and undoing all of the amazing work that has been done on this issue. If the DARK Act is accepted, there is little hope for state-based, or even national labeling laws to ever take hold. This 11th hour battle for labeling will be a symbolic end of the road for this critical fight.
Now more than ever, your support on this issue is needed to make sure the road turns toward transparent practices.
We are honored to live in Vermont, and stand behind the thousands of Vermonters, as well as citizens across the country – together, standing up for people’s right to know.
Call your representatives and tell them that this sleazy attempt to strip Vermont and other states of the right to label GMOs is wrong.
Call now and we’ll connect you to your Senator: (877) 926-5487