After a deluge of misleading advertisements, California voters rejected Proposition 37, which proposed labels on foods containing genetically engineered ingredients.
Many organic companies stepped up to the plate and contributed to support this initiative. If you are one of those companies, I would like to sincerely thank you.
It is important to me to support companies that share my values. I was therefore happy to see that my food dollars, when I buy your products, are invested back in supporting measures that I support. I applaud your efforts to support consumers’ right to know, and will gladly support your company by buying your products—and encouraging my friends and family to do so as well.
The deceptive advertisements that led to the defeat of Proposition 37 were bankrolled by out-of-state corporate money from the biotechnology, pesticide and food manufacturing industries. Parent corporations of many organic brands contributed financially to defeat the right-to-know initiative.
I was disappointed to see Horizon, Silk, R.W. Knudsen, Santa Cruz Organic, Kashi, and other organic and “natural” brands are owned by companies that contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars each to defeat Proposition 37.
I will look for alternatives to these brand names, since I have no interest in supporting companies that embrace GMOs and invest their profits, some based on my patronage, in opposing the public’s right to know what is in our food.
Finally, I was disappointed to see that some companies, like Whole Foods, with $10 billion in net annual revenue and the Hain Celestial, with more than $1 billion in net revenues, gave only last-minute, token contributions to support Proposition 37.
These companies are some of the largest in the natural and organic food industry. Had we seen the same level of enthusiasm for consumers’ right-to-know from Whole Foods and Hain Celestial as we saw against the right-to-know from Monsanto and DuPont, the playing field would have been more level, and the misleading information spewed by giant corporate agribusinesses would quite possibly not have prevailed on election day.
Passing Proposition 37 in California may have been our best chance at seeing all foods containing GMO ingredients labeled nationally anytime in the near future. But as more news comes out about potential health and environmental problems, it will not likely be the last.