Washington State Public Disclosure Commission web site
Saturday, January 4, 2014
General Mills: State Based Labeling: Washington Initiative 522 (I-522).:
Our position on Washington’s I-522General Mills has long opposed state-based labeling laws – and we opposed Initiative 522 (I-522).
State-based labeling laws – with requirements that would differ by state – would result in a patchwork of different labels in different states that would increase the cost of products for companies and consumers alike.
General Mills believes food labeling regulations should be set at the national level, not state-by-state – and most companies hold the same view.
I-522, which was rejected by Washington voters in November 2013, would have required the labeling of some – but not all – food and beverage products sold in Washington state containing genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.
General Mills supports a national standard for labeling of non-GMO products. The U.S. standard for organic food products is an excellent model. Organic certification and labeling standards established at the national level – not state-by-state – allow organic food producers to reliably certify and label products as “organic.” They also provide a clear, consistent labeling standard upon which organic consumers can rely.
General Mills offers organic product choices in most of our major categories in the U.S. By definition, organic products cannot use GMO ingredients. In effect, national organic certification and labeling standards enable us to reliably offer consumers non-GMO product choices in most of our major categories across all 50 states.
This is helpful for consumers, and we believe organic certification and labeling could be a national model for labeling non-GMO products in the U.S. Just as consumers can rely on organic certification and labeling in purchasing organic products, a national standard for labeling non-GMO products would allow consumers to purchase products made without GM ingredients in all 50 states.
Such a system would be substantially more reliable for consumers than differing state standards, and we think it makes much more sense than a patchwork of different labels that would vary from state-to-state.
Posted by JOlmsted at 6:24 AM