Connecticut: First State to Adopt Broad GMO Labeling

Bill passed in Connecticut requires food manufacturers to label all products with GMOs

Good news for grocery shoppers in Connecticut. You’ll soon be able to tell the difference between foods that contain genetically modified ingredients and those that don’t. No more uncertainty about whether they might be hiding in the food you’re buying. Connecticut is the first state to pass a bill requiring that food manufacturers label all products that contain genetically modified ingredients, according to The New York Times.

But, unless four additional states, including one of Connecticut’s border states, Massachusetts or Rhode Island, pass similar regulations, the law will not go into effect. Gov. Dannel P. Malloy won’t sign the bill into law unless these provisions are met.

“This bill strikes an important balance by ensuring the consumers’ right to know what is in their food while shielding our small businesses from liability that could leave them at a competitive disadvantage,” the governor said.

Those additional states must be in the Northeast and have a population of at least 20 million. Currently, more than 20 states are considering the same legislation, including New York, Maine, and Vermont.

New York’s recently proposed labeling bill was not passed after intense lobbying from a representative of the Council for Biotechnology Information, a trade group made up of big-name food and seed companies including BASF, Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroScience, DuPont Monsanto, and Syngenta. Alaska, on the other hand, already passed a law in 2005 requiring the labeling of all genetically engineered fish and shellfish. So maybe there’s hope for Connecticut.

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