Labeling Standards: The Fight for Food Transparency

May 13, 2015 by Damon Jablons

Image via article on TakePart arguing for increased transparency in the food system

When it comes to the labeling movement, the US is behind the times. All of our key trading partners–over 60 countries around the world–require genetically engineered ingredients to be labeled. These labeling requirements allow citizens to be educated consumers, deciding for themselves what they wish to consume. As O’Brien writes, labeling practices can give us basic information about the way our food was produced, such as how a crop has been grown, what synthetic chemicals–including pesticides, fertilizers, and other chemicals– were allowed to be applied.

Interestingly, American food companies comply with these labeling standards overseas, in order to keep their markets in those countries. But those same companies do not comply with the labeling standards here. States such as Colorado, Oregon, and Vermont have considered legislation to make these labels mandatory, but many high-powered food corporations (such as Monsanto, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Kraft, and more) are fighting against legislation like this.


The pro-labeling movement is not about whether you are pro- or anti-GMO. Instead, the pro-labeling movement aims to increase transparency in our food system by requiring that genetically engineered ingredients be labeled as such.

To learn more, check out EMA. For a list of companies fighting labeling legislation, visit Take Part.

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