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Vermont Senate Passes GMO Labeling Law

Vermont's bill differs from bills passed in Connecticut and Maine as it doesn't contain a clause that requires other states to pass similar measures.

corn

Photo: bark (Flickr)

China recently turned down U.S.-grown corn due to GMOs.

This week, Vermont passed a law that would make it the first state to require labeling of foods made with genetically modified organisms.

The state Senate approved the bill with a 28-2 vote; the state House of Representatives has already passed the bill.

Vermont’s bill differs from bills passed in Connecticut and Maine as it doesn’t contain a clause that requires other states to pass similar measures.

GMOs Heat Up

New York also has a similar bill — but it first has to survive the Consumer Affairs Committee, where major industry lobbyists don’t want to see it succeed.

The bill could gain ground, though, as public concern grows over what goes into our food. One poll by the New York Times found 93 percent of respondents were in favor of labeling.

Global Problems

The United States does not require GMOs to undergo the same rigorous safety assessments as other countries.

Sixty-four countries to date have labeling laws, including Australia, Japan and many countries in Europe.

Additionally, China has banned imports of genetically modified corn from the U.S. containing Viptera, known as MIR 162, after previously accepting it.

For now, in Vermont, the bill goes back to the House to pass the edited bill. If the House approves, it will become law July 1, 2016.

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Liz Leslie

Liz Leslie is a journalist based in Bloomington, Indiana. When she's not writing about food, she's likely eating food. Or dreaming about food.

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