What’s in our food?

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Dear Editor,

Genetically Engineered  foods and products are currently not labeled, pose a threat to organic and natural foods, and have been approved without adequate safety testing. As consumers, we have the right to know what’s in our food.

Further, the FDA is not testing these products itself. The agency is relying on edited summaries provided by the very companies that have a financial interest in bringing these biotech crops to market. And under current FDA law, the companies are not even required to provide summaries!

Labeling is essential for me to choose whether or not I want to consume genetically engineered foods. Genetically engineered foods are required to be labeled in the European Union nations, plus Japan, China, Australia, New Zealand and many other countries around the world.

As an American, I firmly believe I should also have that right to know if my foods have been genetically engineered.

A poll released July 15, 2003 by ABC News found that 92 percent of the American public wants the federal government to require mandatory labeling on genetically modified foods.

The figure was 93 percent in a poll ABC News conducted in 2001, so support for mandatory labeling is strong and consistent. As ABC News stated, “Such near-unanimity in public opinion is rare.”

I urge you to write to your congress people and ask that mandatory labeling of all genetically engineered plants and animals, a moratorium on all efforts to deregulate or approve new genetically engineered plants or animals, and protection of non-GE and organic farmers by assigning liability for injury caused by genetically engineered organisms be required by law.

I happen to know that Barbara Boxer and Dennis Kucinich introduced the “GE Food Right to Know Act” back in 1999 (and every year since) and that to date, it is still waiting to be voted on.


Wendy Crist