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California voters reject Prop. 37 food labeling initiative

On election day, voters in California, USA, rejected Proposition 37, an initiative aimed at providing consumers with information about genetically engineered food. If passed, the initiative would have mandated that processed foods no longer be labeled as "natural," and retailers would be responsible for ensuring all processed foods containing any covered any covered material are identified as “Partially Produced with Genetic Engineering” or “May be Partially Produced with Genetic Engineering.”

However, the No on 37 campaign successfully helped to urge voters to vote "no" to the measure. The No on 37 campaign included a coalition of family farmers, doctors, scientists, researchers, retailers, food companies, business groups and more.The campaign argued that the proposition was misleading, costly and unnecessary based on the science of genetically engineered foods.

“California voters clearly saw through Prop. 37 and rejected higher food costs, more lawsuits and more bureaucracy,” said Henry I. Miller, MD, the founding director of the US Food and Drug Administration's Office of Biotechnology (1989-93). “Food labeling policy should be based on logic and science, not fear. Leading scientific organizations have all agreed that foods containing genetically engineered ingredients are safe and are not materially different from their traditional counterparts. We’re glad the voters rejected this misleading, costly and unnecessary measure.”

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