Nov 2, 2012 8:35 PM by Keli Moore, KSBY News

Prop 37: To label or not to label?

Should genetically engineered foods, those that have had changes introduced into their DNA, be specially labeled? California will decide Tuesday, Nov 6th.

There are a lot of arguments on both sides and many said Friday that this measure has been poorly drafted.

Opponents said grocery bills for the average family could increase as much as $400 per year because everything genetically modified would have a new label, so it's essentially a paper cost.

Those against Prop 37 also said there could be as much as $1-million in costs for the Department of Health to regulate and enforce the new labeling.

"There's an ability for anyone to sue the proposition has these loop holes and exemptions that seem to be unfair and make no sense. For instance if you have soy milk it has to be labeled, but cow's milk does not. Dog food that has meat has to be labeled, but meat for human consumption does not," said Jackie Crabb, San Luis Obispo Farm Bureau.

Crabb said the list goes on. She said two thirds of the food that we eat every day is on it, so if it's a right to know label then this goes against that argument.

Proponents said we have a right to know what is in our food and many other countries already follow suit, including India and China.

"We fundamentally support peoples right to know. We are concerned about our health our children's health and the health of our communities and we have serious concerns about genetically modified organisms and we do feel that people have the right to know where their food is coming from and how it was produced," said Ron Colone, Marketing Director, New Frontiers.

He said we need to realize that the funding for no on Prop 37 is coming from big chemical companies that have spent close to $50 million on campaign ads.

While yes on Prop 37 has spent $7-million mostly from small organic food producers. Proponents are concerned about genetically modified foods, and said there have not been enough long term studies to know the effects. But opponents said "GE" foods are safe because there have been many studies by the World Health Organization and the U.N. as well as the American Medical Association, to prove this.

Backing for Proposition 37 is falling fast. A new poll by the California Business Roundtable showed 50 percent oppose and 39 percent said yes on Prop 37 with 10 percent undecided.

Click here for more information on Prop 37.



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