Should We Label GMO Foods?



The safety of genetically modified food is an unnecessarily controversial subject. Despite countless studies finding no adverse health effects, leading to a comprehensive report from independent scientists finding no difference between GMOs and conventionally bred crops, and the FDA clearing GMO salmon for sale, the push back continues. This often culminates in the demand to label all food containing GMOs so that the consumer can chose whether to eat it or not. But is this necessary?

Attempts to pass legislation to force companies to do this has been popular in many states, and in Vermont, this is due to come into law on July 1. Rather than produce separate packaging for one state, many manufactures have simply resigned themselves to putting GMO labelling on all products.

But that may not be necessary any more. The Senate may be about to put a stop to the explicit labelling in a compromise with manufacturers, instead requiring products containing GMO foods to have a QR code, which consumers can then scan with a smartphone.

Obviously, for those who are against GMO foods being in our diet, due to the misguided notion that they are somehow bad for our health or simply because they are uncomfortable with the monopoly of large agricultural businesses, this will be seen as a major setback. Yet there is plenty of evidence to suggest that the idea of labelling GMO foods is wrong in the first place.

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