Vermont Advances Unscientific Label Policy

CornfieldLast week, as we were warning national lawmakers to follow science over propaganda on the issue of genetically improved foods (GIFs), the Vermont State Senate advanced a “GMO labeling” bill that would require warning labels on GIFs. Scientific bodies have decried the policy, with the American Association for the Advancement of Science declaring they might “mislead and falsely alarm consumers” and the American Medical Association ruled GMO labels had “no scientific justification.”

With GIFs providing hope in the fight against the twin killers of malnutrition and starvation worldwide, it is shameful that American politicians are caving to activist pressure to stigmatize these promising technologies. The lack of scientific thought behind the activists’ efforts is staggering: One “holistic nutritionist” writes a long whine about “mutations,” neglecting to realize that genetic mutations are why our foods exist in their present forms. Don’t take our word for it though: Take the National Academy of Sciences’:

Food derived from mutation breeding varieties is widely used and accepted. Organic farming systems permit food from mutated varieties to be sold as organic. In the United States many varieties have been developed using induced mutagenesis, such as lettuce, beans, grapefruit, rice, oats, and wheat.

Other activists complain that GIF’s don’t help farmers. That will also come as news to the National Academy, which recently conducted a survey that found, “Many American farmers are enjoying higher profits due to the widespread use of certain genetically engineered crops [i.e. GIFs] and are reducing environmental impacts on and off the farm.” It doesn’t surprise us that the environmental left pushing the anti-GIF scare and its allies deny science on this matter even as they demand action now because of scientific findings on others; hypocrisies are, after all, par for the activist course.

Even where activists claim scientific justification, it’s usually junk and often evaporates under the harsh light of scrutiny. As we’re telling readers of The Blaze, one such study recently went up in smoke:

And now, following all of that, the journal that published the study has taken the extraordinarily rare step of retracting it altogether. That puts the genetically-improved-foods-are-dangerous activists in the same discredited camp of the vaccines-cause-autism nuts and cellphones-cause-cancer data-fudgers.

Legislators and consumers should be very wary of the organic food-backed effort for “GMO labeling.” On the one side you have reputable scientific consensus. On the other, an organic products company founded by an asylum escapee. We know who’s more credible; will Vermont?

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