Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Should you support the campaign to label genetically engineered foods?

Infographics are cool and this one is no exception. It very quickly defines the concern over genetically modified organisms (GMOs) leaking into our food supply. It also provides a very helpful link to a petition that is sent to the FDA asking for the labeling of any foods that are genetically engineered. I encourage you to sign it if you have not already.

While I fully support this idea, I worry about how it will be implemented. For one thing, this would be the providence of the FDA, a group that hasn’t always had our best interests in mind when it comes to genetically engineered food. I can imagine some gigantic loopholes and a squadron of lawyers ready to drive through them. I am also rarely a fan of giving the government more power, but in the end, one of the roles of a democratic government is to protect our freedoms. We are free to make choices and they should be informed choices. Properly labeling genetically engineered food would give people the information they need to make an informed choice.

My biggest concern is this. How deep will the labeling go? For instance, when you’re eating out, will the menu indicate any ingredients that are GMO? What about the food that is served in the school lunch line? Will we know if it’s GMO or not? I doubt that it will, and while this would be a great first step, we’ve got a long way to go.