Thursday, February 6, 2014

GMA unifies food industry in GMO label fight

GMA unifies food industry in GMO label fight - Jenny Hopkinson -

The Grocery Manufacturers Association is calling in friends to help in its push for a federal GMO labeling law to preempt state requirements.
A lot of friends.
The influential food industry group announced the creation of its 29-member “Coalition for Safe Affordable Food” Thursday.
“We’ve all been talking about this for some time. What we’ve determined is now is the time for us to stand together,” Pamela Bailey, GMA’s president and CEO, said, during a roughly one-hour call with nearly a dozen reporters, a sign of the growing interest in the battle over whether to mandate the labeling of foods that contain genetically modified organisms.

This “is not one or two or three groups. This is a coalition that is unprecedented in the value chain.”

When asked why the group was mobilizing now, Chuck Conner, president of the National Council of Farm Cooperatives, another one of the coalition members, responded that the recent GMO labeling ballot initiatives in California and Washington state, which were narrowly defeated, played a significant part. In particular, he said there was “an enormous [amount of] misinformation” provided consumers during the campaigns for those initiatives.

“This is a farm-to-fork education effort,” Enright said. “It’s time for use to get our information out to tell our stories and help folks understand the use of the technology.”

The other members of the coalition are: 

AACC International/American Phytopathological Society
American Farm Bureau Federation
American Seed Trade Association,
American Sugarbeet Growers Association
Corn Refiners Association
Council for Responsible Nutrition, Flavor & Extract Manufacturers Association
Global Cold Chain Alliance
International Dairy Foods Association,
National Association of Manufacturers
National Association of Wheat Growers
National Confectioners Association
National Fisheries Institute
National Grain & Feed Association
National Oilseed Processors Association
National Restaurant Association
National Turkey Federation
North American Millers Association
Snack Food Association
U.S. Beet Sugar Association.

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