Massachusetts lawmakers to put GM labeling bill on governor’s desk this session

A food fight is shaping up between advocates clamoring to require labels on products that include genetically modified ingredients and a deep-pocketed food lobby that calls such labels confusing.

More than 150 lawmakers have signed on as cosponsors of a bill to make Massachusetts the latest state to require food processors to label products with genetically modified ingredients, or food grown from engineered seeds.

Backers include Sens. Joan Lovely, D-Salem, Kathleen O’Connor-Ives, D-Newburyport, and Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester.

They say they have enough support to put the bill on Gov. Charlie Baker’s desk in the current legislative session.

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“People have the right to know and understand the products that are contained within our food in order to make informed and healthy decisions to meet their dietary needs,” Tarr said.

Supporters say consumers are increasingly conscious about the quality and safety of their food.

“Many of the packaged foods on the shelves of local grocery stores contain genetically modified ingredients, and we want to make sure that information is out there so consumers can make their own choices,” said Deirdre Cummings, legislative director of the Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group, one of several nonprofit groups behind the GMO labeling coalition. “Right now, consumers are essentially blindfolded.”

Read full, original article: GMO labels win support while processors prepare for a fight

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