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Maine Quietly Mounting Massive Support for Historic GMO Labeling Bill
For many months legislators and community leaders in the State of Maine have been quietly building broad and unprecented support for passing a historic first-in-the-nation Right-To-Know GMO Labeling law. This week the bill, LD 718, jointly sponsored by the bi-partisan team of Representative Lance Harvell (R-Farmington) and Senator Chris Johnson (D-Lincoln), was introduced to Maine citizens and legislators.
The bill has the tri-partisan support – Republicans, Democrats and Independents – of 123 co-sponsors. This is an astounding number of legislators in light of the fact that Maine’s citizen Legislature has only 35 Senators and 151 Representatives. This remarkable display of solidarity is a reflection of the strong support all across Maine for basic honesty and transparency in labeling of genetically engineered (GE) food. There are many unanswered questions as to the impact of GE crops on such varied concerns as human and livestock health, soils, environment, religious beliefs, farmer sovereignty and rural decline. Therefore, it is only fair and reasonable that Maine consumers be provided truthfulness in GMO labeling which is the tool needed to allow us to determine how we spend our family’s food dollars.
Last Fall, the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardener’s Association Board of Director’s, with the full support of longtime Executive Director Russell Libby, designated passage of a GMO Labeling bill as top priority for 2013. MOFGA has been spearheading efforts for the bill’s passage and is part of the national coalition of states fighting for GMO labeling.