Letter: Labeling bill will drive up food prices
State Rep. Maureen Mann, the main sponsor of House Bill 660, recently said that you can find no consensus that genetically engineered foods are safe. If. Mann truly believes that GE foods are a danger to consumers, why is she only looking to have foods labeled that are sold in grocery stores, not restaurants? Why not push for warning labels on all food, or even push to have GE foods banned if there is a danger?
The reason is because her statement cannot be any further from the truth. The FDA states on its website that “foods from genetically engineered plants must meet the same requirements, including safety requirements, as foods from traditionally bred plants.”
Agriculture Commissioner Lorraine Merrill pointed out in her Oct. 2 column in the Weekly Market Bulletin, that geneticist and biotechnology advocate Val Giddings told a House subcommittee that his son has life-threatening food allergies and that opponents of agricultural biotechnology claim it increases allergy risks. The reality, Merrill pointed out, citing Giddings’s testimony, is the opposite. Foods derived from biotechnology are the only foods screened for allergenicity, and genetic engineering methods allow for more precise transfer of specific genes, resulting in reduced risks.
The only thing Mann’s legislation would accomplish would be to increase food prices and limit the choices the people of New Hampshire have for food. It would not improve food safety. I hope people will take up her up on her offer and contact her about her legislation and ask her why they will have to pay more for food.