USDA bioengineered food labels could further confuse consumers about GMO ingredients

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When Congress passed and President Barack Obama signed the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Law in 2016, they hoped to end the debate and confusion over the labeling of foods for genetically modified ingredients.

The law did preempt state labeling laws, as the food industry wanted, but there are so many problems and [inconsistencies] with the law and the rule promulgated by the Agriculture Department’s Agricultural Marketing Service that when the standard goes into force in January, there will be consumer confusion and lawsuits, three lawyers involved with the standard said [March 27] at the Grocery Manufacturers Association Science Forum.

[Greg Jaffe, director of the Project on Biotechnology at the Center for Science in the Public Interest] said that the problems with the law and rule begin with the decision to use the term “bioengineered” rather than the better known genetically modified.

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The second issue, he added, is that the mandatory labels will not say which ingredient is genetically modified, but the voluntary labels are allowed to list which ingredients are modified. If a food product contains a label that says it contains genetically modified ingredients, consumers may conclude that ingredients that are not genetically modified, such as wheat, are genetically modified.

Read full, original article: Confusion, Lawsuits to Reign When USDA Enforces Biotech Labels

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