California to Vote on GMO Labeling Initiative

If the measure passes, the state would become the first in the country to mandate labels on GM foods.


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California is poised to become the first state to require that foods made using genetically modified ingredients bear a special label in supermarkets. The measure, which was approved for the November ballot this week, would require most raw and processed foods containing GMOs to modify their packaging by 2014, though certain items, such as organic foods and alcohol, would be exempt. Likewise, the initiative wouldn’t apply to meat and dairy companies that feed their animals genetically modified grains—a fact opponents of the measure call a considerable loophole. Still, those who support the proposal say it helps empower consumers to make informed choices about the foods they buy. Similar measures are currently under review in several states, including Connecticut and Vermont.