After tremendous effort by a large coalition, including grassroots activists and national groups including Food & Water Watch, the state legislatures of Connecticut, Maine and Vermont passed laws requiring on-package labeling for genetically engineered (GMO) foods. This victory affirms that people do have a voice and the power to make the change they want to see happen in their communities.
Over 90% of Americans support GMO labeling, and yet large food companies still refuse to tell people what’s in their food. The Grocery Manufacturers Association, as well as biotech companies like Monsanto, have spent millions of dollars lobbying against GMO labeling laws, and Big Food corporations are still looking for ways to subvert laws that protect and inform people about what they’re buying. For instance, under industry pressure, provisions were added to Maine and Connecticut’s labeling laws requiring surrounding states to pass GMO labeling laws before these laws could go into effect. Vermont’s GMO labeling law is scheduled to go into effect July 1, 2016—but Big Food companies are working hard to stop it.
There is still work to be done. Food & Water Watch is continuing to work as part of a larger coalition for GMO labels in New York and Massachusetts so that people in those states—and eventually all of the U.S.—have a say in what they eat.