Seattle Organic Restaurants

Yes on 37 – Respect the rights of American people to choose

The proposition No. 37 requires foods that are genetically modified to be labeled so consumers can choose if they wish to consume GMO foods or not. You would assume that is quite reasonable, no? But California Prop. 37 have been under attack by the “big 6 pesticide companies” including Monsanto, DuPont, Dow, Bayer, Syngenta and BASF.

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The big 6 pesticide firms, their supporters and financial beneficiaries are carrying a campaign against “prop.37” that is called “No On 37”. They have raised 32 million dollars so far and poured 19 million dollars into their campaign against Prop.37. These companies have been trying to call Pop.37 deceptive, despite all the independent scientific research studies indicating serious hazards and concerns expressed by the scientific communities and informed consumers.

Let’s take a look the premise of the “No on 37”.

No on 37 claims: “Biotechnology, also called genetic engineering (GE), has been used for nearly two decades to grow varieties of corn, soybeans and other crops that resist diseases and insects and require fewer pesticides. Thousands of common foods are made with ingredients from biotech crops. Prop 37 bans these perfectly safe foods only in California unless they’re specially relabeled or remade with higher cost ingredients”.

Wrong. The few GE companies responsible for producing GE crops are attempting to combine safe biotech practices in agriculture with unsafe GE crops and seeds and combine them all together to suggest that GE is as safe. GE is a relatively new phenomenon and needs to be thoroughly researched and investigated before it should have been introduced into our food supply. Many concerned scientists have warned the public about the long-term side effects of these so called “perfectly safe foods” and have related GMOs to increase in food toxicity and allergies, immune suppression, resistance to antibiotics, and the incidence of cancer.

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No on 37 claims: “… GE crops resist diseases and insects and require fewer pesticides”.

Wrong. The reality is that, GMO crops lose their pest resistant quality in a year or two. Farmers in both India and Argentina have been struggling to fight the super weeds and super pests as a result of GMO crops. Farmers who decided to use GMO crops for its disease resistance are now forced to use much stronger herbicides and more costly seeds that will ONLY make chemical and biotech companies wealthier.

No on 37 claims: “Prop. 37 is full of absurd, politically motivated exemptions that make no sense. It requires special labels on soy milk, but exempts cow’s milk”.

Wrong. The desire to give the American people their choice is not motivated by politicians but rather resulted from activism, mostly by mothers who want their children and their family to eat healthy nutritional foods that are not contaminated with chemicals and pesticides and are not genetically engineered with DNA injection that can harm children and potentially change human DNA which may reduce our ability to fight off allergies, diseases, and illness. Soy is one the most genetically modified ingredient in the world today, along with corn and maze. By contrast, many cattle farmers in U.S. decided not to allow GMO to enter their farms and their cows produce dairy that is rBST-free, hormone-free, and GE-free. These farmers have opted to label their products accordingly. Soy production is controlled by large corporations rather than a small family farm.

No on 37 claims: “Dairy products, eggs, meat and poultry are all exempt. Fruit juice requires a label, but alcohol made with some of the same GE ingredients is exempt. Food sold in a grocery store requires a label, but the same food sold in a restaurant is exempt. Food imported from China and other foreign countries are exempt if sellers simply claim their products are “GE free”. Unscrupulous foreign companies can game the system”.

Wrong. Again. Prop. 37 is neither attempting to ban GMO foods nor is prejudice towards GMO ingredients. It is, as the description suggests, an attempt to label foods made with GE ingredients. Dairy, eggs, meat and poultry are already classified under USDA as organic or non-organic (i.e. produced with hormones, pesticides, etc.) and they are not made from multiple ingredients. Milk is from a cow or it may be goat milk. It does not have a dozen obscure ingredients like vegetable soup in a can. Meat or poultry is from a farm and again certified by USDA as organic or not. Until we genetically create a cow, we are safe to avoid the need to label a genetically engineered cow’s milk. The same cannot be said for soy, corn, or maze. What is important is that we start labeling GE foods so that we can track all the ingredients that are genetically engineered or modified so that long term we can establish the source of all ingredients and hence be able to label all foods and give the American people the choice, as is their right, to select the food option best for their family.

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No on 37 claims: “Prop 37 forces state bureaucrats to administer its complex requirements by monitoring tens of thousands of food labels at tens of thousands of grocery stores, retail outlets, farms and food companies. In fact, it sets no limit on how many millions would be spent on bureaucracy, red tape and lawsuits. It’s a blank check… paid by taxpayers”

Wrong. This is simply an ineffective scare-mongering tactic to convince people that it will cost them money therefore they should vote against knowing that they are being poisoned. There is already a labeling structure in place for all of our foods in U.S. and we do not need to create a new one, and absolutely no need for a costly process or implementation. The food producers will simply indicate, as they do now, what ingredients were used with the addition of GMO added to the name of the ingredient. Scaring the American people is not going to give a blank check to the GMO companies to give us small doses of poison so that they can make billions from their crops. What’s truly deceptive about this statement is that the “prop. 37”opponents don’t find millions of tax dollars that have already gone to subsidizing their ad campaigns against labeling but insist American people do not need to know and must not make an informed decision on what to purchase for themselves and their family. No on 37 claims: “Prop 37 was written by a trial lawyer to benefit trial lawyers. Its primary sponsor is a trial lawyer whose firm and organization have made more than $3 million suing under the terms of another proposition he helped write.

Prop 37 creates a whole new class of “headhunter lawsuits,” allowing lawyers to sue family farmers and grocers without any proof of harm. It subjects farmers, grocers and food companies to huge litigation costs and lawyer payouts”

Wrong. It seems to me that the above paragraph was written by a trial lawyer that works on retention fees of millions of Dollars on behalf of large corporations in order to achieve one single goal: To deprive American people of their right to choose between GMO and non-GMO. Trial lawyers often lie and liars are often forgetful. In the first paragraph, they suggested that dairy, eggs, meat and poultry are all exempt, etc. and not they are suggesting that all these farmers will be subject to lawsuits because they have to simply comply with one basic requirement of labeling their products as GMO or non-GMO. There will be no litigation if we simply respect the rights of American people and label the food so that they can choose what they want to feed themselves and their family.

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No on 37 claims: “Prop 37 forces farmers and food companies to implement costly new labeling, packaging, distribution, record-keeping and other bureaucratic operations that will cost billions of dollars to implement. Or, companies will be forced to switch to higher-priced, non-GE ingredients, like organics, in order to sell food in California. Economic studies show this would increase food costs for the average family by hundreds of dollars per year a hidden food tax that would especially hurt seniors and low-income families who can least afford it.”

Wrong. Double wrong. Prop 37 is requiring food producers to label their products to indicate whether they are genetically engineered or not. It’s that simple. Today producers have to indicate what ingredients exist in their products. After Prop 37 passes, they would have to add the words GMO or non-GMO for each of their ingredients. The world will not collapse as GMO companies seem to claim. This additional labeling requirement has nothing to do with the color or size of packaging, with distribution, nor business operations or practices.

The economic studies that they are referring to in order to prove their point is obviously non-existent but there are many respectable industry studies and research findings that suggest that GMO is harmful and potential dangerous for human consumption. While there is dispute between real scientific studies and those funded by GMO companies to claim the opposite, at the very least, the American people should be given the right to choose if they want to consume GMO or not. Depriving American people of their right to choose is unconstitutional and unjust and un-American. Since the consequences of GMO is deterioration of the health of the American people, isn’t it their right to choose whether to consume GMO foods or not? What about the cost to the American tax payer both in terms of pain and suffering and healthcare costs?

Constantly increasing rate of chronic diseases is putting a huge burden on the American people and their budge for healthcare and medication. Medicare and Medicaid spends about 150 billion dollars a year. Annually, heart disease causes over 800,000 DEATHS by itself in the US and 500 billion dollars a year are spent on heart disease. Costs of health care by 2018 will increase to 300 billion dollars. The biotech company forget that chronic diseases are much more costly than labeling foods that are contaminated with pesticides or are genetically modified. At the risk to the health of the American people, GMO companies are fighting the American freedom of choice by refusing to label GMOs.

Even if there is a slight possibility that GMOs are hazardous, shouldn’t we wait and perform more tests on GMOs before unleashing it into our food supply? Isn’t this the policies of other 27 different countries including France and Russia that have banned GMOs while 50 other countries worldwide that have required GMO labeling? Say yes on “Prop.37” and defend your right to know what’s in your food.

 

 

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