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Illinois

Congress Shuts Down GMO Labeling

In an egregious display of federal overreach, the United States Congress has nullified a landmark Vermont regulation requiring clear labels for food made with genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The law, which took effect on July 1, 2016, benefitted not only residents of Vermont, but all Americans, as food manufacturers deemed it more cost-effective to provide the labeling nationwide rather than create unique packaging for a single locality.

Under the guise of creating a uniform labeling requirement that is applicable throughout the nation, Congress has stepped in and nullified Vermont's law and substituted it with a misleading, toothless counterfeit. Unlike the Vermont law, which required clear labeling in plain English, the federal statute allows food manufacturers to instead provide a toll-free phone number or QR code, and omit GMO information on the label itself altogether. Certain classes of GMOs, such as foods produced by gene editing, are exempt. And worse, compliance is voluntary. Dubbed by critics as the DARK Act (Denying Americans the Right to Know), the law "immediately prohibit[s] states or other entities from mandating labels of food or seed that is genetically engineered." This means that even if your entire state legislature and governor wanted the food in your state to have clear, commonsense labeling for GMOs, it would be a federal crime to enact and enforce them.

There is no question that Vermont was overpowered by the financial resources and lobbying influence of the food industry, which wants desperately to avoid common sense labeling.
~Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin

This is precisely the kind of federal overreach that can be addressed at an Article V convention to limit the power & jurisdiction of the federal government and impose spending controls & term limits upon its officials. 

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