Letter to the Editor

Labels are important

San Luis ObispoOctober 15, 2012 

Proposition 37 asks us to decide whether we should label the foods we buy (largely those that already require labeling) that contain significant levels of genetically modified organisms.

Isn’t this component just as important as already-existing ingredients, which are labeled? We name common allergens such as peanuts, as well as trans fats, sodium, sugars and other components we might wish to regulate in our diets. This information helps us manage nutritional and health risks in light of physical situations we may be dealing with, such as pregnancy, diabetes and allergies.

Are there equivalent health needs regarding GMOs? Many experience that there are. Adults who are lactose-intolerant find genetically modified products problematic. Many parents observe that the increased incidence of childhood allergies is exacerbated by genetically modified yogurts, soy and corn products. Yet we have GMO baby foods on grocery shelves that are labeled “natural.” Proposition 37 prohibits such misrepresentation.

Labeling for GMOs is not a new idea. Fifty countries, including many in Europe as well as Japan and other key U.S. trading partners, require such labeling. Why should our own labeling standards fall so short of what so many others in the world demand?

Proposition 37 adds an important new component to our labeling system. Please vote “yes.”

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