In the ongoing fight of David (the general public) vs Goliath (GMO corporate citizens like Monsanto) the beautiful state of Vermont, the House of Representatives voted 114 to 30 in favor of a bill that calls for mandatory labeling of foods sold in Vermont that contain genetically engineered ingredients. It would also ban GMO-containing foods from being marketed as "natural" or "all natural." The same bill was passed by the state Senate by a vote of 26 to 2.
The Organic Consumers Association is calling this the first potential no-strings-attached GMO labeling law because it doesn't require other states to sign similar laws to force the law into effect. GMO-labeling laws passed in Connecticut and Maine do. That power in numbers strategy is designed to prevent lawsuits, but Vermont lawmakers believe they crafted a strong law. Nevertheless, the legislature did create a fund to help cover legal costs if they are sued over the right-to-know-what's-in-your-food law.
The law is expected to go into effect on July 1, 2016.
Depending on the poll, about 90 percent of consumers want genetically modified foods labeled. Regardless many processed companies and the corporations that sell transgenic seeds and agri-chemicals have spent hundreds of millions of dollars into defeating labeling initiatives. Monsanto, Dow, and other chemical companies persuaded voters in Washington and California to vote against labeling laws using scare tactics like telling people food prices will skyrocket, a claim that has been debunked. Monsanto and other chemical companies are now setting their sites stopping a GMO planting ban initiative in a single Oregon county. The state is expected to introduce a GMO labeling ballot initiative in November.