Three Senate Democrats back voluntary GMO labeling, bill now before full Senate

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The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis.

States could no longer require labeling of genetically modified foods under legislation approved by a Senate panel.

The Senate Agriculture Committee voted 14-6 Tuesday to prevent the labeling on packages of foods that include genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.

Three Democrats voted for Roberts’ bill: North Dakota Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, Indiana Sen. Joe Donnelly and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar.

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Vermont is set to require such labels this summer, and other states are considering similar laws.

Senators have said they want to find a compromise on the labeling issue before Vermont’s law kicks in. Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., chairman of the panel, said a patchwork of state laws would be a “wrecking ball” that could be costly for agriculture, food companies and ultimately consumers.

. . . .

The bill would block Vermont’s law and create new voluntary labels for companies that want to use them on food packages that contain genetically modified ingredients.

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. . . .

Passage won’t be as easy in the Senate, where 60 votes will be needed to overcome a certain filibuster. Vermont Sens. Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders have both strongly opposed efforts to block their state’s law.

. . . .

[Sen. Debbie Stabenow D-Michigan] said that for the legislation to receive broad enough support to pass the Senate, “it must contain a pathway to a national system of mandatory disclosure that provides consumers the information they need and want to make informed choices.”

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Read full, original post: Labels on genetically modified foods? Not so fast

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