Passage of Prop 37 would be a huge breakthrough for GM food labeling supporters whose numbers are growing nationwide. Labeling campaigns in other states, particularly Washington, Vermont, and Connecticut would gain tremendous momentum. It would also strengthen the case for federal labeling laws. Food manufacturers may start sourcing non-GMO ingredients for their products sold nationwide in order to avoid a GMO label. This would boost production of non-GMO corn and soybeans nationwide.
There would almost certainly be a lawsuit filed if Prop 37 passed, and the issue could end up in the Supreme Court.
Tipping point for labeling is coming
A no vote on Prop 37 would be disheartening to labeling supporters in California and nationwide, but if labeling opponents think this would stop the rising tide for labeling they are very wrong.
Washington’s labeling initiative, I-522, is likely to appear on the ballot in 2013, and Monsanto and cronies will have to fork out millions more to defeat this and other initiatives in the works. A new Coalition of States for GMO Labeling has been formed with organizers from 23 states. Just Label It aims to reach 2 million comments on its labeling petition to the FDA.
All this may leave Monsanto & Co. to be playing an expensive and increasingly futile game of “whack-a-mole” to defeat every labeling initiative that pops up.
Food manufacturers may start to wonder why they are supporting GM technology when it provides zero benefits to them and lots of downsides. In fact, Forbes magazine recently questioned the wisdom of food manufacturers fighting consumers’ right to know and called for “a hide-nothing, tell-all approach.”
This may lead more companies to join the Non-GMO Project, which is already experiencing phenomenal growth.
Win or lose, Prop 37 has raised awareness of the GM food issue among millions of more Americans. People are becoming more educated about GMOs, they don’t like what they see, and they want the right to know.
As even a biotech industry lawyer recently told the Chicago Tribune, the tipping point for labeling is coming. It’s only a matter of time when.
Join Green America Executive Director, Alisa Gravitz, and Yes on 37 California Right to Know Media Director, Stacy Malkan, for “Beyond Proposition 37: What's Next for GMO Labeling,” Sunday November 11 at 4pm on the Main Stage at San Francisco Green Festival. Discuss what's next for GMO labeling in California and the nation and find out how you can play a role in protecting your family and the public from GMOs.