Ethan A. Huff
Nov 8, 2012
Labeling genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) is simply too costly, and any law requiring that GMOs be properly labeled will raise food prices significantly. This was one of the many lies propagated by the biotechnology and processed food industries in the months and weeks leading up to the vote on Proposition 37 in California, the historic GMO labeling initiative that was defeated in large part due to the more than $45 million that Monsanto, Dow, Kraft Foods, and dozens of other industry players hypocritically pumped into the fraudulent No on 37 campaign during the final hour.
For the past few weeks, Californians have had to endure a seemingly endless barrage of misleading television commercials and phony voter guide mailers urging them to vote against the labeling proposal because it would allegedly “cost taxpayers and consumers millions,” to quote California “family farmer” Ted Sheely, who was prominently featured in a No on 37 propaganda commercial that aired throughout the state. The same commercial, along with several others, also claimed that GMO labeling would increase grocery bills by about $400 per year for the average California family.
Such claims are bald-faced lies, of course, as food manufacturers change their labels constantly without issue, not to mention the fact that the supposed “Prop 37 Economic Impact Study” from which many of these bogus claims and figures were pulled is nothing but fabricated, industry-backed nonsense. Even so, these nonstop lies were apparently enough to close the gap on an earlier 2-to-1 lead in favor of the bill — The Los Angeles Times reported back in September that 61 percent of registered voters supported Prop. 37, while only 25 percent opposed it.
Labeling GMOs is apparently too costly, but spending millions to fight labeling is no big deal
So what happened to cause the bill to eventually fail in the eleventh hour? Nearly $50 million in lobbying funds is what happened. In a demonstration of sheer irony and hypocrisy, the same companies that have been complaining about supposed food cost increases from GMO labeling are the very ones that spent tens of millions of dollars making sure the GMO labeling bill did not pass. And in the end, the GMO cartel got its wish, at least in the short term.
The good news, however, is that more than 4.2 million Californians saw through the lies of Monsanto, and voted in favor of Prop. 37 despite the propaganda campaign. And the long-term momentum the Yes on 37 campaign generated about the presence of GMOs in the food supply means it is only a matter of time before GMOs are eventually on the radar of all Americans.
“Yesterday, we showed that there is a food movement in the United States, and it is strong, vibrant and too powerful to stop,” said the Yes on 37 campaign following the election. “We always knew we were the underdogs, and the underdogs nearly took the day. Dirty money and dirty tactics may have won this skirmish, but they will not win the war.”
To begin proactively fighting against the unlabeled presence of GMOs throughout the American food supply, be sure to check out the Label It Yourself initiative.
Also, be sure to boycott the “natural” and organic imposters that contributed to the No on 37 campaign, and support those that fought for the people’s right to know what they are eating and feeding their families.
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This article was posted: Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 6:42 am