Senator Bernie Sanders is urging his colleagues to allow individual states to require the labeling of all genetically engineered foods. Sanders’ proposal is one of more than 80 amendments to the new Farm Bill.
The Vermont Legislature considered a labeling bill this past session but Democratic leaders decided not to bring it up because of concerns that the major chemical companies would sue the state.
Speaking on the Senate floor, Sanders said his amendment makes it clear that states do have the authority to address this issue if they choose to:
“Amendment number 2310 is about allowing states to honor the wishes of their residents and allowing consumers to know what they are eating,” said Sanders. “If this is not a conservative amendment I don’t know what is. Americans deserve the right to know what they and their children are eating and that is what this amendment is all about.”
And Sanders notes that dozens of countries, including the European Union, have similar labeling laws in place:
“So this is good in 49 or more countries around the world why is it not acceptable in the United States of America and the answer is pretty simple,” said Sanders. “That we have a large powerful multi-national corporation who is more concerned about their own profits that they are about allowing the American people to know what is in the food that they are eating.”
The full Senate is expected to vote on the Sanders amendment early next week.
MORE: Watch Senator Bernie Sanders impassioned speech on the Senate floor.