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Inspiring Stories

Fantastic Friday: Connecticut’s GMO Labeling Law Edition

GMOct

A few days ago, Connecticut became the first state to pass a bill requiring labeling of GMO products.

House and Senate leaders, who earlier this month produced separate bills on the labeling of products with genetically modified organisms, reached a compromise Saturday that would make Connecticut a national leader in advising consumers.

Of course, it wasn’t that easy.  To get to this point required a lot hard work and pressure from outside groups such as GMO Free CT, as previous attempts at passing legislation fell on the deaf ears of policitians in the state.

A week ago, the measure appeared dead. Then a grass-roots group, GMO Free CT, used social media to focus the movement’s ire on Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and House Speaker J. Brendan Sharkey, D-Hamden, whom activists deemed responsible for the apparent defeat.

…Tara Cook-Littman of Fairfield, a self-described PTA mom and food blogger behind GMO Free CT, called the turnaround a pleasant surprise and a significant push for a labeling movement that has changed the food industry in Europe, but not the U.S.

“Honestly, it’s incredibly important,” said Cook-Littman, reached by phone. “This is going to provide momentum for other states.”

And I surely do hope that it does provide momentum.  Because, while Connecticut is to be applauded for passing this GMO labeling bill, there are several caveats to it’s implementation – mainly that it requires other states to adopt similar laws before requiring food producers and farmers in Connecticut to label their products as well.  Perfect? No.  A first step? Yes.

The trigger was changed so that [in order for the Connecticut law to go into effect] four other states in the Northeast with a total population of 20 million must pass a similar law, and one must border Connecticut. Cook-Littman said the new trigger is reasonable, and Sharkey said it guaranteed that Connecticut would not stand alone.

So now it’s up to other states to follow Connecticut’s lead and other people to be inspired by Cook-Littman and GMO Free CT and make this happen.

(New York, I’m looking at you)

Have a Fantastic Friday everyone!

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