Studies show that genetically modified (GM) food may pose serious health risks. A rare skin condition called Morgellons Disease and cancer are two of the many illnesses that have been linked to GM products. Because of these possible hazards, there have been nationwide efforts to protect consumers from them.
According to the Huffington Post, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said in 1992 that GM food did not require special labeling because it wasn't "materially" different from regular goods, in that its distinction can't be noticed by any senses like taste or smell.
California recently introduced a bill to mandate GM label compliance, which was sparked by concerns about GM salmon that some believe could pose a threat to the population of wild salmon. While the bill was not passed, "The Consumer Right To Know Act, AB 88," would have required the GM fish, which hasn't been approved by the FDA, to be identified as a GM product on its packaging.
Similarly, Vermont Representative Kate Webb introduced the "VT Right To Know Genetically Engineered Food Act" to the House on February 1, which would require any GM food or goods with GM ingredients to be labeled.
Regardless of the health risks, green consumer movement leader Wendy Gordon believes even the manufacturers of the GM food should be willing to boast about their products if in fact they are as much better as companies make them seem.
"If I just made a better salmon, I'd want people to know about it," Gordon wrote for the Huffington Post. "I'd want them to know that by adding just one gene from a Pacific Salmon to an Atlantic Salmon, I can bring you this GE salmon faster and cheaper and without overfishing its wild cousins."
In a 2010 Washington Post poll, 94 percent of the more than 1,850 respondents said that they wanted any product that has compromised DNA should be labeled as such. The people have spoken, and while progress may be slow, it seems as though the government may start to listen.