Why a Major Food Organization is Teaming Up with Monsanto and Friends to Block Your Right to Know What’s in Your Food
[The California Ballot Initiative to label genetically engineered food is] “a serious, long-term threat to the viability of agricultural biotechnology. Defeating the Initiative is GMA’s single highest priority this year.” – Pamela Bailey, President of Grocery Manufacturers Association, speech to the American Soybean Association, July 9, 2012
This November, Californians will vote for or against Prop 37, the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act. The outcome of that vote will likely determine whether the U.S. will one day join the nearly 50 other countries that allow their citizens to choose between genetically engineered and non-genetically engineered food through the enactment of laws requiring mandatory labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
The election is three months away, but the battle lines were drawn months ago. Lining up against the consumer’s right to know — and throwing plenty of money into the fight — is a long list of industry front groups, food conglomerates and biotech companies. Near the top of that list is the powerful Washington, DC-based Grocery Manufacturer’s Association (GMA), a multi-billion-dollar trade association. The GMA represents America’s $1.2 trillion “Big Food” industry, led by supermarket chains, Monsanto and other biotech companies, animal drug companies, multinational food manufacturers, and junk food restaurants — all of whom rely on the use of dangerous chemicals, pesticides, animal drugs, and GMOs to produce cheap, contaminated food.