Demand for mandatory GMO labeling could boomerang on critics, increasing safety perceptions


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While proponents of mandatory GMO labeling have derided this bill as a means to prevent GMOs from being labeled, a closer analysis reveals that it has some unique characteristics that might actually result in GMOs being labeled, but not necessarily the way that labeling proponents have in mind.

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Think about the USDA labels in the meat section of your grocery store. What do they mean to the consumer? If you are like me and you see “USDA Choice” or “USDA Prime” on a food package (or a restaurant menu), it means greater confidence in the quality of the meat, versus a package that just says: “Beef”. The same goes for the many foods, fibers, and other products that the USDA grades and helps producers market to the public through the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Having the USDA come up with a voluntary labeling program could potentially enhance the marketability of foods labeled as containing GMOs.


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Pat Roberts’ bill could result in a voluntary label that would make products more competitive, and offset the added cost of tracking and/or testing. This bill could actually result in a proliferation of GMO labels – but labels that don’t stigmatize and communicate the safety and/or benefits of genetic engineering.

Read full, original post: How Pat Roberts’ bill could actually result in labeling GMOs