You may not be aware of this, but currently a flood of GMO (genetically modified organism) foods is making its way to a grocery store near you. Scientists have been busy genetically modifying everything from alfalfa to salmon, and soon it could get harder and harder to tell the GMO from the real deal.
I will not get into a debate regarding the benefits and/or the inherent dangers of GMO foods. I will just concede that both sides make compelling arguments, but at the end of the day, I have no interest in eating GMO foods. I’ve seen enough of what big Ag and the food processing industry has done to our food supply, and I wish to opt out. At this stage of my life, I am no more interested in eating a genetically modified apple than I am in eating a butter-like spread that has been re-engineered to be void of saturated fat and cholesterol. I’m sorry, but I’d prefer natural foods over those created in a corporate laboratory.
What is most troubling about the GMO movement is that the corporations behind these products don’t believe you or I need or have the right to know that we are consuming them. They would prefer you just eat away, unknowingly, and be happy about it. Their complaint is simple, if you know that the foods they produce include GMO ingredients, you might decide not to buy them. They’re stand is that their products are generally consider safe, and labels will unjustifiably frighten us away.
I don’t know about you, but that simply infuriates me. I don’t care where you stand on GMO foods, but no one should be denied the right to know what goes into their foods. For many of us, there are still too many unanswered questions regarding the impact of GMOs on our bodies and our environment, and we have the right to know which products contain them and which do not.
For this reason, I am supporting an initiative in California called Proposition 37, which will be on the state’s election ballots this November. If you agree with me that GMO labeling should be mandatory, I invite you to find out more about the issue and join me as I take action. Even if you don’t live in California, there are steps you can take to help.
Why should non-Californians care about Proposition 37? It’s simple. California is the most populace state in the US and the eighth largest economy in the world. It can be said, in some cases, that what’s good for California, is good the rest of the U.S. If manufacturers need to go through the expense and trouble of labeling GMO foods sold in California, it makes economic sense to just do it for the rest of the country, but in the event that don’t choose a one-label-fits-all approach, a victory in California will encourage other states to follow suit.
If labeling of GMO foods is something you care about, I urge you to take immediate action and join the Right to Know Campaign. While polls have indicated that the broad majority of Americans support the right to know what we eat, opponents of Proposition 37, which include large food processors and chemical companies we all know by name, have amassed over $10 million to defeat the bill and deny the consumer the right to know. So you need to act fast, and learn more about the issue. If we allow these companies to get away with this, it will set a precedent, and soon none of us will know exactly what we are eating.