Senator Boxer: Labeling Genetically Engineered Foods
Monday, March 12, 2012
Today I joined 54 of my Senate and House colleagues in sending a letter urging the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to require the labeling of genetically engineered foods so that consumers can make informed choices about what they feed their families.
To read more about this issue, including our letter to FDA, please click here.
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer
Your Voice Counts: Californians Respond to This Message +
It is OUR RIGHT to know what is in our food, and to be able to make informed decisions about the products we buy and the companies we support. I appreciate the actions you have taken to help push forward this effort to label GM foods.
Asha, San Diego
Honestly, my heart welled up with joy when I read your email tonight! I posted your good tidings on Facebook and immediately friends chimed in their approval. You are loved by so many of us! Such a bright light in our lives! PS: I'm an Organic Farmer for our small, family-owned farm, Kitchel Family Organics, north of Chico. I want our children and all future generations to have healthy food on their tables!
Lana, Los Molinos
Here is my facebook posting: Senator Boxer continues to exemplify integrity uncommon among elected officials. She defends the environment and for over a decade has tried to get the FDA to label genetically engineered food. When last night we witnessed the Carpinteria City Council become the first city to endorse the CA Label GMO ballot initiative, one councilman said, "This is a no-brainer; why hasn't it always been labeled?"
You just got this old Republican's vote!! GMO's have to go. Thanks,
There is a very difficult problem with labeling genetically modified foods: All foods that are farmed have been genetically modified. Selective breeding of plants and animals is a form of genetic modification that long predates modern molecular biology. The only foods that have not been modified by farmers are those which are harvested in the wild, e.g., fish in the ocean. The fundamental point is that genetic modification is neither good nor bad. It depends on the particular modification and its effects on the consumer as well as its effects on the environment.
Thank you for your efforts and activism regarding the labeling requirement for genetically modified foods. This labeling issue is an important concern for me, and I know for my wife as well. We both hold doctoral degrees, she in Biochemistry and myself in Clinical Pharmacy. I am a firm believer that federal regulation needs to strengthened, not weakened in the areas of health and safety. As an educated citizen, consumer and father labeling laws allow me to make informed decisions for myself and my family. I do not wish to told condescendingly by some giant multinational that I needn't be concerned about genetically modified foods. I want to make that decision myself, and believe that I have the education and background to do so. Senator please follow through with this effort to mandate a labeling requirement for genetically modified foods. Sincerely,
Laviero, Daly City
I read your letter about GE foods. I am an MD, with a degree in molecular biology. I am unaware of any literature that would suggest that there would be any health concerns with this type of food. I wonder if you could direct me to any such information. I know that these techniques allow the food industry in general to be more productive, which ultimately leads to cost savings and more nutritious foods. I expect this is more helpful to the poorest of our society. You certainly seem supportive of genetic engineering of humans such as stem cell research, which I also support. Thanks
Arnold, La Jolla
THANK YOU for supporting this IMPORTANT issue!!! It is about the ability to make choices as the letter says. I am proud that BOTH Senators from my state support this!
Jane, Mountain View
Sincere thanks for your voice supporting the labeling of GMO food. Sometimes it feels like you're only one of the few in Washington that truly speak for the people you represent. California is lucky to have a strong leader such as yourself. Keep up the good fight. Sincerely,
Thank you for taking a stand against GMO's. It feels like a real battle of David and Goliath. It's wonderful to have you taking a stand for all the David's of the world. Here's to a healthy future where the consumer gets to choose what they eat. (which would be a loud resounding NO to GMO's!) Best wishes,
Louise, Los Angeles
Thank you for urging the fda to require gmo info on our potential food supply. I don't know if there is any danger or not but I do want to make that choice for myself. Also, you should URGE the FDA to fire that former monsanto exec. that is acting as a chief advisor......something aint right there if ya know what i'm saying.
John, Menlo Park
I hope the Senate will go a lot farther to regulate GMO foods. Currently pollination contamination is an economic reality that can ruin growers of organic produce the world over. GMO corporations like Monsanto, ADM, Dow and others can, and wish to, wipe out all natural seeds and get farmers to invest in their costly, deadly, one-time-use seeds. These corporations really do not care about a natural or healthy future --- I hope and wish you would act on that reality. Thank you.
Charles, San Francisco
Why are you working to require labeling of genetically engineered foods? I haven't been informed of any issues serious enough to warrant such steps. Nobody getting sick. No imminent extinction of some hyper-important species. No destruction of important crops through cross-pollination. There are so many important issues to deal with that I wonder how the issue of labeling foods containing genetically modified components can possibly compete for and win your attention. What am I missing?
Christopher, San Diego
Your efforts to persuade the FDA to label genetically engineered foods are appreciated. The fact that this has not yet been accomplished is a "tribute" to the ever-increasing power of corporations to obstruct the truth whenever the truth impedes profits. Good luck in this fight--you will need it!
I am pregnant with my first child and recently heard that researchers have found the DNA of the virus they splice to GMO Corn (to work as a pesticide), in the blood stream of women and their unborn fetuses! Since 75-80% of corn is GMO in the US I found this greatly disturbing and upsetting. I now feel I am forced to try and avoid all non-organic corn for the duration of my pregnancy making eating out very difficult since corn especially, is hidden in so much of what we eat today. Thank you again for this all important step in giving me more control of what I put into my body and that of my growing baby. Hopefully by the time he/she is born I will at least have fair labeling to help me avoid these disgusting frankenfoods. Sincerely,
Thank you, Barbara for your support in labeling food products that contain GMO's. I won't feed them to my family and neither will most of Europe! California is an agricultural powerhouse, we need to keep it this way. Cross contamination by GMO's is inevitable. The very nature of farming is at stake. Reducing the use of GMO's also helps to reduce the use of herbicides and pesticides that are diminishing soil, water and air quality. So thank you, thank you, thank you. The stakes are too high to ignore!!!
Pat, Grass Valley
With all due respect, do you really believe the FDA will require GMO labeling unless they are forced to do so? Why not pass a law requiring it?
Thank you for your effort to label GMO. I wish you and your fellow Senators would consider going a mite further and banning GMO altogether. At least band them until test can be done to see what adverse effects, if any they have on people not rats but people. Again I wish to thank you for your efforts so far!!
Thank you for caring about the health and well being of all people and for taking a stand against the potential frightening consequences of GMO's. It gives me hope for the future. Sincerely,
Thank you for your support of labeling GMO food! I can always count on you for a sense of intelligence and foresight!
Mary Louise, Murrieta
Thank you and the other 53 members of the Senate for standing up to Monsanto's take over of the FDA. Thank you for your support of the campaigns against GMOs, JustLabelIt and Right2Know. Thank you for all that you do,
Pat, Point Arena
Thank you so much, Senator Boxer for standing up for our food safety and demanding that GMOs be labeled. I feel this is one of the more crucial fights on the table currently as it's a experiment with the natural food change, with no idea on how it affect us globally and is being done by huge agri bullies like Monsanto PURELY for profit! I believe we not only vote in ballot box but also with our dollar and should know what we're supporting. And I believe studies have shown that when consumers know that GMOs are in certain foods, they'll opt not to them.
Erica, Los Angeles
Thank you for standing on the side of what benefits the environment and public welfare.
Lorraine, San Diego
Excellent. Please continue to be tough on Genetically Engineered Foods and the creators of them. I never want to ingest GMO's. Please fight for local farming and their rights to a GMO free field. The are too many stories where a farmer's right to his own crop has been challenged based on GMO drift. Regards,
Matthew, Ben Lomond
I believe in our right to know and I also fervently believe that one corporation should not control seeds by rendering them infertile and thereby exerting unwarranted power over food and other crops. The safety of gmo's is questionable at this point for human consumption so perhaps their infertility is a blessing. Nevertheless, too much power for one entity.
Pam, Santa Rosa
The idea that Americans have been offered up as test subjects to corporate engineering is sinful I hate to think of our future generations. Thanks,
Jo, South Pasadena
We consider this issue very important. Thank you for signing on to the letter to the FDA. It would be unconscionable not to label GM foods. For our health's sake, we need to know what we are eating.
Wallace and Joan, Mountain View
I am a volunteer in Santa Barbara gathering petitions for GMO Labeling. Your email was such a joy and relief to receive. :)
Celeste, Santa Barbara
We do not know all the ramifications of this tinkering with DNA, Monsanto is taking over farmers' fields that have been pollinated by the wind and no fault of the farmers, and studies NOT led by Monsanto are coming up with some very disturbing findings. I am gathering signatures to get the Freedom to Know initiative on the November California ballot. Thanks again! I really appreciate your stand.
Before one can require the labeling of genetically engineered food, I think you first need to define what you mean by that term. Consider the corn you buy at the market, it looks like this: http://www.schreiberandsons.com/sweet%20cornimage.jpg . Now take a look at what it came from, how maize looked not much more than two hundred years ago: http://images.cdn.fotopedia.com/flickr-1411179526-hd.jpg . Only two centuries of genetic engineering have produced uniform color, bigger ears and bigger kernels. If you review http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicken#Origins , you will see that man has been genetically engineering ("breeding") chickens for thousands of years. My point is that genetic engineering of our own food is a human act as old as agriculture itself. Nor is it bad in and of itself. I find that the current proposal seems to be targeted at the wrong part of the problem. If a genetically engineered foodstuff proves bad for people to eat, it should be banned on that basis, not on how it was created. To do otherwise is to completely ignore the impact of 7,000 years of human history on the species of this planet we share with them.
I normally disagree with nearly every decision and vote you make and our views on nearly every subject are polar opposites, but I would like to thank you for supporting this measure. Though genetically engineered foods to be consumed by humans should not have been allowed in the first place in my opinion, I appreciate that you are attempting to get it labeled so that those of us who wish to avoid such foods may do so. Thank you. Sincerely,
Thank you very much for listening to the people and urging the FDA to require labeling of gm foods so consumers can make informed choices on what they eat and feed their families. Please continue and take this issue as high and far as you need to get it done for the people. Thank you for fighting the good fight for truth and disclosure on our food and may it extend to all of our institutions and aspects of our country - by the people and for the people, not for profit's sake. Margaret, Santa Cruz
Thank you and your fellow law makers for sending a great letter to the FDA concerning out food supply.
It is important to label ALL ingredients, including GMO's so we can make educated choices for ourselves and our families. Not labeling genetically modified food is underhanded, unfair and tells me that it is must be unsafe if they have to "sneak" it in our food unbeknownst to us. Label it and let us vote with our dollars! That's the way it should be.
Dawn, Van Nuys