Right now, thanks to a California ballot initiative, we have a fighting chance to get national food brands to declare upfront, on the label, whether or not they contain genetically-modified organisms.
To get this passed, we need all the help we can get. But California-based Trader Joe’s -- one of the largest organic retailers in the country -- is refusing to support the ballot initiative. Meanwhile, Monsanto and other mega-corporations are spending tens of millions of dollars to keep us in the dark about what’s really in our food.
Whole Foods and other competitors of Trader Joe’s have already come out in favor of GMO labeling. If we can get Trader Joe’s to support GMO labeling too, it could be a game-changer.
At issue is California ballot initiative Proposition 37. If Prop 37 passes, California will become the first state to require labeling of genetically-modified food. According to Claremont McKenna College professor Jack Pitney, “If manufacturers change national labeling practices to conform to California law, the effects will show up on every grocery shelf in America.”
Most SumOfUs.org members live outside California, so we can't vote for the measure, even if it will affect us. But as citizen-consumers, we can vote with our wallets, and let big organic retailers like Trader Joe’s know that we want them to support this crucial initiative. That's why we're working with Food Democracy Now to combat the influence of large corporations and stop them from letting GMO products slip into our kitchens unlabeled.
Corporations like Monsanto benefit from being able to target their political donations, and have near-unlimited funds to pour into local elections. Using deep pockets to buy scare-tactic ads and misinform consumers, big corporations exploit the democratic process to expand their own power while boxing us in. But thanks to the power of the internet, we can take on big business by targeting our energy and attention, and by spreading the word to our family and friends.
Earlier this year, we banded together with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers to get Trader Joe's to sign the Fair Food Agreement. We know that Joe can listen. This time let's have our voices heard to make sure we know for certain what's in the food we buy.