Campbell’s announces support for GMO labeling

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Proponents of mandatory labeling laws for foods that contain genetically modified ingredients are praising Campbell Soup Co. for publicly announcing plans this week to advocate for federal legislation.

“Campbell is optimistic a federal solution can be established in a reasonable amount of time if all the interested stakeholders cooperate,” the company said in a news release. “However, if that is not the case, Campbell is prepared to label all of its U.S. products for the presence of ingredients that were derived from GMOs, not just those required by pending legislation in Vermont.”

{mosads}The company said it would seek guidance from the Food and Drug Administration and approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture on its labeling.

Just Label It said Campbell’s has been a leader in giving consumers more information about what’s in their food.

“Consumers simply want a factual disclosure on the package, not a warning, and we are hopeful that Congress can craft a national GMO labeling solution in the coming months. Thanks to Campbell’s leadership, we are closer to reaching that goal,” Gary Hirshberg, Just Label It’s chairman, said in a statement.

In a statement Friday, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), who has been fighting for mandatory labeling legislation, called the company’s decision courageous.

“This commonsense decision by Campbells — and all of Campbell’s brands, including the iconic Connecticut company Pepperidge Farm — will enable consumers to make informed decisions about the food they and their families eat,” he said.

The Campbell’s portfolio includes Pepperidge Farm, Bolthouse Farms, Arnott’s, V8, Swanson, Pace, Prego, Plum, Royal Dansk, Kjeldsens and Garden Fresh Gourmet. 

Opponents of mandatory GMO labeling said companies are free to make labeling decisions that are best for their businesses, but insisted there is an overwhelming consensus GMO labels are unnecessary, inherently misleading and will drive up food prices for consumers. 
The Coalition for Safe and Affordable Food said it’s urging Congress to find a national uniform solution to a patchwork of state GMO labeling laws.  
“There is wide agreement on the urgent need for Congress to act on a bipartisan solution to avoid the economic costs of the Vermont law that will be shared throughout the industry—from producers to consumers,” the group said in a statement. “We stand ready to work with Congressional leaders to find a bipartisan solution and urge Congress to act as soon as possible to enact a national uniform solution.”
This story was updated at 3:00 p.m.
Tags Campbell Soup Company GMO Packaging and labeling Pepperidge Farm Richard Blumenthal

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