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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

September 12, 2013 at 4:24 PM

Labeling genetically modified foods in Washington

Agricultural profiteers

Initiative 522 supporters, who want labeling of GMO foods, gathered for a rally outside a Grocery Manufacturers Association meeting at the Westin Hotel in Seattle in August. [Mark Harrison, The Seattle Times.]

Initiative 522 supporters, who want labeling of GMO foods, gathered for a rally outside a Grocery Manufacturers Association meeting at the Westin Hotel in Seattle in August. [Mark Harrison, The Seattle Times.]

More than 350,000 Washington voters signed the petition to bring Initiative 522, an act to label genetically engineered foods, to the ballot here in Washington. [“Monsanto gives $4.6M to foes of GMO labeling,” NW Wednesday, Sept. 11.]

So far, Monsanto, who is the biggest agricultural profiteer of genetically modified foods in the world, has already dumped $4.6 million into the No on 522 Coalition.

Three other large agricultural companies that produce hybrid seeds and pesticides — Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroSciences and Dupont Pioneer — are also spending hundreds of thousands of dollars each.

Not one of those companies is based in Washington state, yet they are determined to keep Washington voters from winning the right to honest labeling of their food.

Don’t let Monsanto and other agricultural profiteers buy your vote.

Emily Bishton, Seattle

A right to know

An ear of genetically altered corn waits to be harvested in Illinois.[Scott Olson/Getty Images.]

An ear of genetically altered corn waits to be harvested in Illinois. [Scott Olson/Getty Images.]

I want to know whether a given food product has genetically modified ingredients.

I am educated, informed and concerned about the amount of influence Monsanto and other commercial-food producers have over this issue.

They have generally shown themselves to be entirely self-interested and profit-motivated in the past, and don’t seem to prioritize long-term public health very highly. They don’t appear to be good corporate citizens.

Please don’t let these companies frighten Washington voters with a large and depressingly effective scare-tactic advertising campaign.

Get their money out of politics and this decision. Make them improve their transparency and make them accountable to the public.

I feel I have a right to know whether there are genetically modified ingredients in the foods I eat and feed to my children. Let’s encode that into law.

Russell Cork, Bremerton

0 Comments | More in Environment, Food/nutrition, Politics | Topics: foods, genetically modified, gmo

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