International Labeling Laws
Latest research shows 64 nations enforce consumer 'right to know' laws for GE foods, while U.S. lags behind
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Center for Food Safety (CFS) has announced the release of its new, interactive Genetically Engineered (GE) Food Labeling Laws map detailing the powerful, growing presence of laws requiring information on GE content in consumer food products around the world. Global food policy research conducted by CFS confirms that 61 countries, including member nations of the European Union, Russia, China, Brazil, Australia, Turkey and South Africa require standards of mandatory GE food labeling. The United States is not included on the list of governments providing open, accurate information on the source of foods on grocery shelves.

As the spread of commercialized GE food products mount, the number of people exposed to GE foods globally has grown. This makes truth in labeling of GE food ingredients increasingly fundamental to preserving consumer choice and protecting personal health. The CFS GE Food Labeling Laws map provides an instant overview on the advance of labeling mandates across the globe, and will continue documenting the growth of GE labeling as more nations establish these laws. As detailed on the map, India will join the roster of nations requiring GE labeling in 2013.

“One quick glance at the map and you know the U.S. is truly lost on GE labeling,” said CFS executive director, Andrew Kimbrell. “With all we know about the human health and environmental impacts of GE products, it’s encouraging to see the number of nations that have embraced labeling. Yet, at the same time it’s frustrating and offensive that Americans are denied the information about their food that those in Kenya and Saudi Arabia receive.”

Despite polls consistently showing up to 90% of Americans favor GE food labeling, efforts supporting labeling in the U.S. have been unsuccessful to-date. In November 2011, CFS filed a groundbreaking legal petition with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration demanding the agency requiring GE labeling. Currently, over 1 million people have joined the petition. Additionally, twenty states have considered bills requiring labeling for or prohibiting GE food over the past three years. On November 6th, California’s Prop 37 will give voters the opportunity to join the citizens of 61 nations across the globe who have the information and the lawful power to choose whether GE foods will be a part of their daily diet.

“Global GE labeling laws are springing up because both governments and citizens alike instinctively understand we all have the basic human right to know what we put in our bodies and where it came from,” said Kimbrell. “If food manufacturers and elected officials don’t want to put the facts of food ingredients on product labels, you can bet something is very wrong.”

The interactive, color-coded GE Food Labeling Laws map offers a quick, navigable guide of those countries that have mandated GE foods labeling laws, and the strength of each policy. It also recognizes those countries that have banned GE foods completely.

Countries with Mandatory Labeling of GE Foods

Australia Latvia
Austria Lithuania
Belarus Luxembourg
Belgium Malaysia
Bolivia Mali
Bosnia and Herzegovina Malta
Brazil Mauritius
Bulgaria Netherlands
Cameroon New Zealand
China Norway
Croatia Peru
Cyprus Poland
Czech Republic Portugal
Denmark Romania
Ecuador Russia
El Salvador Saudi Arabia
Estonia Senegal
Ethiopia Slovakia
Finland Slovenia
France South Africa
Germany South Korea
Greece Spain
Hungary Sri Lanka
Iceland Sweden
India Switzerland
Indonesia Taiwan
Ireland Thailand
Italy Tunisia
Japan Turkey
Jordan Ukraine
Kazakhstan United Kingdom
Kenya Vietnam

A link to the map can be found here.

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About Center for Food Safety
The Center for Food Safety is a national, non-profit, membership organization founded in 1997 to protect human health and the environment by curbing the use of harmful food production technologies and by promoting organic and other forms of sustainable agriculture. More information can be found atwww.centerforfoodsafety.org

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