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Focus Shifts to Senate after Voluntary GMO Labeling Bill Passes House

August 4, 2015

After the House of Representatives overwhelming approved legislation establishing a voluntary, national standard for labeling foods with genetically modified ingredients, NMPF said it will work closely with the Senate on similar legislation. NMPF said any final bill must meet the needs of America’s dairy farmers.

The House bill, known as the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act, creates a uniform, science-based labeling standard for foods made with GM ingredients. It also creates a voluntary non-GM labeling program modeled after the National Organic Program. The bill passed the House July 23rd by a margin of 275-150.

“The strong bipartisan vote demonstrates the broad support for a national, voluntary program for labeling foods with GM ingredients,” said President and CEO Jim Mulhern. “That gives consumers the information they want while reaffirming federal authority over food labeling and preventing the development of dozens of different state food labeling laws.”

Last year, Vermont became the first state in the nation to enact a mandatory GMO labeling bill, raising the specter of similar measures in states across the country. The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act would pre-empt the Vermont bill, which is scheduled to go into effect next year. 

Genetically modified food ingredients have been proven safe by nearly 2,000 studies from the leading scientific bodies worldwide, including the World Health Organization and the American Medical Association. Up to 80 percent of the food available in the United States contains genetically modified ingredients.