Legislation introduced by Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS) last month for a federal genetically modified organism labeling system has farmers and consumers concerned about the future of agricultural practices.
The largest family farmers and ranchers union, the National Farmers Union, understands a farmer's or rancher's decision to use GMOs and also understands the consumer’s right to know what is going into the food they buy.
“Many of our members have chosen to incorporate genetically modified organisms into their production methods, while others have made different choices,” NFU President Roger Johnson said. “The rights of GMO and non-GMO producers should be respected as equal while public concerns about GMOs are evaluated by federal agencies.”
As for consumers, Johnson is sympathetic as well to their desire to research what is being put in their bodies.
“NFU also values consumer rights, including the ability of consumers to have access to as much pertinent information as they want to know about their food,” Johnson said. “We support mandatory labeling of foods derived from genetically engineered plants, although we do not have policy on what such labeling should look like. As such, NFU opposes the proposed GMO labeling bill in its current form.”