Washington GMO labeling measure qualifies to move to Legislature

02/05/2013 10:09:00 AM
Vicky Boyd

The Washington Secretary of State's Election Division has certified that a food labeling initiative has enough signatures to move to the Legislature.

The measure is known formally as Initiative 522 or "The People's Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act."

If passed, it would require that agricultural commodities and processed foods that contain genetically engineered ingredients be labeled as such.

It is being sponsored by Chris McManus, a Tacoma area advertising agency owner who founded www.labelitwa.org.

See related article:
Fight over GMOs moves north

PCC Natural Markets, a Seattle-based cooperative, helped underwrite the signature gathering with a $100,000 donation, according to the co-op's website.

To qualify, the initiative to the Legislature required at least 241,153 valid signatures, or 8 percent of the total votes cast for governor, according to the Secretary of State's office.

Since I-522 was filed in 2012, the signature requirement was based on the 2008 governor's race.

A random sampling of 10,762 signatures found 9,503 were valid, 1,241 were invalid and 18 pairs were duplicates.

That equates to a 17.02 percent error rate.

Proponents of the measure turned in 353,331 signatures.

The measure now moves to the Legislature.

It can either pass it, reject it or modify it.

If passed, it would become law.

If the Legislature rejects it, the proposal would be put on the ballot for the state's electorate to consider.

If the Legislature modifies it, both the original proposal and the modified measure would be put before the state's voters.

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Robert Wager    
Canada  |  February, 05, 2013 at 11:26 AM

This staement seems very clear about the safety of GMO's. http://www.aaas.org/news/releases/2012/1025gm_statement.shtml "Moreover, the AAAS Board said, the World Health Organization, the American Medical Association, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the British Royal Society, and “every other respected organization that has examined the evidence has come to the same conclusion: consuming foods containing ingredients derived from GM crops is no riskier than consuming the same foods containing ingredients from crop plants modified by conventional plant improvement techniques.”

California  |  February, 07, 2013 at 03:31 PM

People have been eating GMO's for thousands of years. Regarding voting on genetically engineered ingredients be labeled as such. Stupid is as stupid does!

Ella Baker    
Texas  |  February, 07, 2013 at 06:34 PM

I don't see any safety even though some individuals agree on GMO labelling. There should be firm stoppage on GMO products importation and distribution. http://geneticallyengineeredfoodnews.com

Robert Wager    
Canada  |  February, 08, 2013 at 03:25 PM

Perhaps this comment from Europe will help ease your safety fears. "The main conclusion to be drawn from the efforts of more than 130 research projects, covering a period of more than 25 years of research, and involving more than 500 independent research groups, is that biotechnology, and in particular GMOs, are not per se more risky than e.g. conventional plant breeding technologies. and "Now, after 25 years of field trials without evidence of harm, fears continue to trigger the Precautionary Principle. But Europeans need to abandon this knowingly one-sided stance and strike a balance between the advantages and disadvantages of the technology on the basis of scientifically sound risk assessment analysis." http://ec.europa.eu/research/biosociety/pdf/a_decade_of_eu-funded_gmo_research.pdf

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