Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Prop 37 & GMO Labelling

The US election is just around the corner. I will be so thankful when it's over! These people give new meaning to term "election year".

But our neighbours to the south are also voting on something called Proposition 37 in the state of California. I vaguely understood that Prop 37 had to do with the labelling of Genetically Modified Organisms (foods), aka GMO's.

Why am I interested? Well, that's kinda the point of being The Mad Granola. Why should all Americans be interested? Well, California had one of the first certifications for Organics... and then other states followed suit. And then Canada got on board too. Canada and the USA recognize each other's organic certifications. (you can read more about that here)

I keep reading the same tag-line for every article emphasizing the importance of Prop 37:
As goes California, so goes the Nation
... and Canada too. (of course, the reverse cannot be said, since we made gay marriage legal first, and they're still trying to figure it out.)

Time to get an edumacation. What I didn't understand was this:

What the hell are companies like Kashi and Larabar doing campaigning against labelling GMO foods??! They're always spouting off about how we can trust them because the would never hurt us and they are natural... So why don't they want to support labelling GMO foods? Apparently, there's been some propaganda goin' on all over the InterWeb! On both sides. You can't have a good food fight without Monsanto... but I'll save that for another post.
Oh MY! That is damning! Until you read this:

Oh! Ok, I get it! The exemptions are already covered by other regulations. That makes sense. I'm not a lawyer, but I understand the need to avoid redundancy.

Dr. David Suzuki is for GMO labelling. Dr. Oz is for GMO labelling. I really don't understand this PhD's open letter to Dr. Oz. Maybe he's mad because he was denied his 15 minutes of fame? He feels that Dr. Oz didn't give a balanced point of view on "biotechnology crops". I didn't see the show so I don't have an opinion on whether Dr. Oz's show had a bias one way or the other. But Bruce Chassy, PhD's letter did make me go out and get an opinion:

I'm for GMO labelling. I just want to know what I'm eating, ok? I may choose to buy GMO, or not... but at least let me make that choice, based on my abilities to personally assess what's right for me. Without the labels, I don't know what I'm eating. 

Let me ask you this: Do you really want to hear about the safety of "biotechnology crops", or do would you rather know what you are eating, and where it came from? Or both! Both would be good. 

What are you going to do with that list of companies who are campaigning against an initiative to label GM food? Let me know in the comments. I don't think I'll be buying Kashi granola bars for the kids this weekend.

You can read more on Proposition 37 at www.carighttoknow.org and www.noprop37.com