QR codes in lieu of on-package labeling for GMO foods?

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The biotech industry, along with its top enabler at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Secretary Tom Vilsack, is trying to sell the idea that the long derided and poorly utilized QR code is the answer to consumer concerns about GE foods. A QR code, if you are among the many not familiar with it, is similar to a bar code. To use it, a person must have a smartphone device, an internet connection, and a QR code reader downloaded onto his or her phone. The person then opens the app and aims the phone at the QR code as if taking a picture. Once complete, the user is taken to a website chosen by whoever created the QR code. . .

1) QR codes are inherently discriminatory: Only 64 percent of Americans own a smartphone.

2) QR codes put an undue burden on the shopper: . . . Imagine that each time you pick up a product you have to pull out your phone, open up an app (if you can connect to the internet), wait for the camera to focus on the bar code, wait for a webpage to load, and then finally read to see if the information you need is there.

3) QR codes raise privacy concerns: When using QR codes what data would be exchanged and how might companies be able to use that data?

4) Tech-based solutions set a dangerous precedent: Whether a product is GE or not is just one of many disclosures that could be moved to smartphones or other technologies and away from clear on-package labeling..

Read full, original post: The High Tech Hijacking of GMO Food Labeling

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