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Early feedback on USDA’s GMO labeling proposal reveals ‘significant disagreement’

| | May 16, 2018
Image source: Ag Web
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

If the first wave of comments to its proposed rule on GMO labeling is anything to go by, USDA’s agricultural marketing service faces a daunting task as it seeks to nail down its national bioengineered food disclosure standard, with early feedback revealing significant disagreement over every issue from the interpretation of ‘bioengineered,’ to the merits of the term itself.

Unsurprisingly, perhaps, given how polarized this debate has become, the early comments (mostly from consumers and academics as industry stakeholders and other organizations are likely to submit comments closer to the July 3 deadline) reveal sharp divisions over the term ‘bioengineered,’ a word which many argue is confusing to consumers more familiar with terms such as ‘GMO.’

Many commentators also dislike the green and yellow ’BE’ logos suggested by USDA in its proposed rule, which one commentator blasted as ‘wildly misleading,’ and another claimed might be confused for the ‘bio’ organic food symbol deployed in Germany.

Commentators on both sides of the debate, meanwhile, expressed concerns about potential exemptions to the rule, which plant scientist Professor Kevin Folta argued only “make the useless rules even more useless.”

Read full, original post: First wave of stakeholders weighs in on ‘bioengineered’ labels: ‘Exemptions make the useless rule even more useless…”

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