Friday, May 20, 2005

The wedge

The makers of genetically engineered food products have been effective at fighting all labeling requirements in the United States--until now. In an effort to protect the Alaskan fishing industry, the Alaskan state legislature passed a bill requiring labeling of genetically altered fish. More such bills are on the way in Oregon and California.

This could end up being the leak in the labeling damn. The Food and Drug Administration has contended that there is no difference between genetically engineered food and the regular kind. Consumers think differently. And, their legislators for pragmatic financial and political reasons are starting to agree. Both the Alaskan house and senate passed the labeling bill unanimously.

Those who have long believed in and lobbied for such labeling may have found their wedge to open up the entire labeling issue. If fish can be labeled, why not everything else?

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