In a 28-2 vote, the Vermont Senate passes a bill that will require packaged food makers to label their products that contain genetically modified organisms ((GMOs)). If the State House of Representatives approves the Senates' changes to the version it passed before sending it the upper chamber, then the law will take effect July 1, 2016.
Vermont will be the first U.S. state to institute such mandatory labeling.
Predictably, food manufacturers oppose the bill saying GMOs are ubiquitous on grocery store shelves. The most popular GMO crops are corn, soybeans and canola which are found in almost every kind of packaged food. They say that GMOs are safe and the law, if enacted, will add unnecessary costs and complications for farmers and the food industry.
Consumer groups believe more safety testing needs to be done by independent researchers.
Vermont's bill would make it illegal to label a food product containing GMOs as "natural" or "all natural".