All In. No Apologies. Pro Agriculture. Pro GMO.
What scares me about Prop 37 is that most people don’t know where their food comes from. Fundamentally this is why a food labeling proposal is needed. Undoubtedly, there is huge need for consumer education in this country. Everyone eats food, but very few actually understand how that food was produced. How many people in this state actually know what it takes to produce pastrami? I’m guessing that the majority doesn’t even know what type of animal this product originated on.
I’ve heard people say that Agriculture is opposed to Prop 37, which would require mandatory GMO labeling on a bureaucratically designated proportion of California produced food products, because Agriculture is afraid that people will stop purchasing products that contain GMOs. I’m not afraid of this at all. When people think of GMOs, they think of Monsanto. And when people think of Monsanto they think of Agent Orange, cancer, or variety of other widely publicized evils. What these people don’t understand is that they’ve been purchasing genetically modified products ever since they entered the market. The majority of America’s favorite products were produced using GMOs.
In the United States 50% of sugar produced is from cane sugar and 50% is from sugar beets. 95% of American produced sugar beets are genetically modified. Furthermore over 90% of all soybeans in the U.S. are genetically modified. Soybeans are used to produce snack foods, breads, and pastries. 85% of the American corn production is genetically modified. This corn is used to produce flour, oil, snack foods, soft drinks, and livestock feed. Not to mention genetically modified rice, potatoes, tomatoes, and vegetable oil. GMOs are everywhere! We’re not going to instantly die by eating them. We eat genetically modified products every day.
I completely support GMO labeling. It’s a step in the right direction to helping consumers know what’s in their food. Currently organically produced are completely labeled in grocery stores. GMO Free is an awesome marketing label. This proposition is not the way to accomplish this. A yes vote for Prop 37 is a vote to put small family farmers out of business. It’s a vote add the budgetary mess in California that is among the worst in the nation. It’s a vote to add to confusion in the grocery store and add to the Sacramento bureaucratic jungle.
Special exemptions for certain food products doesn’t make scene. Adding billions of dollars of expenditure to California’s already failing budget doesn’t make sense. Taking even a few farmers out of work in California doesn’t make sense. Taking away the value of production of these farmers doesn’t make sense, in a state with the daunting task of feeding our own rapidly growing population and a growing global population.
The United Nations has said that food production must double by 2050 in order to feed the growing global population. The State of California plays a huge role in that. The state known for its beaches and celebrities produces more agricultural produces than any other state and most countries. Genetic modification is necessary to accomplish this task of feeding the world. Golden Rice, which meets a shortage of dietary Vitamin A in Southeast Asia and corn modified by Monsanto to grow in drought conditions even the African Continent are necessary to feeding the world.
GMO labeling is a great idea. This proposition just isn’t the means. American consumers do not know what it takes to produce their food. Less than two percent of Americans produces the food it takes to feed this entire nation and the nations that depend on the United States and California for their food supply.