Studies show that more than 90% of Americans support mandatory labeling of genetically modified (GMO) foods. Yet for twenty years the U.S. have been denied that right. The Just Label It campaign was created to advocate for the labeling of GMO foods.
GMO foods include any plants or animals in which their genetic makeup (DNA) has been altered in a way that does not occur naturally or through traditional breeding methods.
The first GMO crops were approved in 1996. Today, more than 90% of GMO soy, roughly 85% of GMO corn and several other GMO crops are grown in the U.S. Meaning that over 70% of the processed foods we eat contain genetically modified material, unknowing to the vast majority of the U.S. population.
Since popularity of GMO crops have increased over the past eight years, impacts are not yet known resulting in no creditable claim whether they are safe from a long-term perspective. However, there are reasons for concern. In the 1990’s, FDA scientists warned that genetically modified was different than traditional breeding and posed risks of introducing new toxins or allergens. Since then, several National Academy of Sciences studies have also confirmed theses same risks in our food and environment. Another concern is the lack of testing by independent scientists. The government’s approval of GMO crops have been based on studies conducted or funded by the companies of theses patented organisms, concluding that GMO food is “substantially equivalent” to its non-GMO counterpart. Studies from these companies have later been deemed false.
One of the first GMO crops approved for human consumption was corn with insecticide constructed into its DNA. Chemical companies insisted that the insecticide would be broken down in human saliva and not survive more than a few seconds in the GI tract. A study published in 2014 revealed that the insecticide did survive as it was detected in the umbilical-cord blood of pregnant women. Because the U.S. does not label GMO foods, scientist cannot conclude the link between GMO food intake and acute or chronic effects in humans and consumers cannot make informed choices about their food.
At Rodale Institute, along with advocating organic agriculture we also support the production of non-GMO foods. Rodale Institute’s elimination of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, antibiotics or growth hormones, grants us as a certified organic and non-GMO farm. Organic farmers attribute to human health and reverse climate change by using farming methods that encourage soil health, clean air, clean water, and sequester carbon.
In the 1940’s, our Founder, J.I. Rodale, stated that "one day the public will wake up and pay for eggs, meats, and vegetables according to how they were produced." Certainly meaning that Americans have a right to know what products were genetically modified.
Consider joining Just Label It in their pursuit to mandate labeling of GMOs on food packages and oppose any legislation that would preempt state GMO labeling laws in the absence of a national, mandatory GMO labeling standard.
GMO statistics and facts from www.justlabelit.org.