California’s Prop 37 would have required food companies to label groceries with genetically modified ingredients. Despite 4 million votes in favor of the initiative, it didn’t pass ($45 million in advertising from Monsanto and other food giants probably swayed voters a little). Now what? Label it Yourself, a grassroots organization, thinks citizens should take labeling into their own hands.
Label it Yourself’s website explains which foods to label (non-organic corn, non-organic soy, and non-organic cottonseed oil are a few of the likely suspects). They also provide labels to download and a template to make your own. Is the labeling legal? Probably not. But it’s definitely an effective way to get a shopper’s attention.
The campaign says its goal is helping consumers make better decisions:
The Label It Yourself (LIY) campaign is not intended to disparage anyone’s personal food choices. It is about bringing attention to the lack of transparency on the part of corporations and our government when it comes to the food we buy and eat. In order for us to make informed decisions about the food we put in our bodies, we need to know what’s in it and how it’s produced!
What’s wrong with GM food? While many GM crops are new and the impacts aren’t yet fully understood, genetic engineering has been linked to allergies, reduced nutrition, creating “superweeds,” harming soil quality, and reducing biodiversity, to name a few problems. And the promises that GM food would help increase yields and reduce water demand haven’t been met. Consumers should be able to know what they're buying.