Press Release

Health Care Providers Support GMO Labeling

 For Immediate Release:  June 20, 2012

Contact:  Stacy Malkan, 510-542-9224, stacy@carighttoknow.org

The American Medical Association passed a resolution yesterday calling for mandatory pre-market safety assessments of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). GMOs are crops that have had their DNA artificially altered by genes from other plants, animals, viruses or bacteria in ways that cannot occur in nature.

Priority should be given to basic research in food allergenicity to identify potential allergens in GMO food, as well as the development of tools to avoid antibiotic resistance, AMA said.

The AMA stopped short of calling for mandatory labeling of genetically engineered foods, but 19 physicians at the meeting in Chicago signed a statement supporting labeling.

“In the face of scientific uncertainty, labeling is a common risk management tool and one that could help track any potential adverse health effects,” the MD statement said. “Our support of labeling also takes into consideration the fact that consumers want to know whether there are genetically engineered ingredients in their food, and they have a right to know. We stand with the 90% of Americans who want mandatory labeling of genetically engineered foods.”

Many health care organizations have passed resolutions supporting labeling of genetically engineered foods, including the American Public Health Association, American Nurses Association, American Academy of Environmental Medicine, California Medical Association, Dignity Health (formerly Catholic Healthcare West), as well as foreign medical associations such as the British Medical Association.   

In one of the most closely watched election races this fall, California voters will decide whether to label genetically engineered foods. The California Secretary of State announced June 11 that the CA Right to Know initiative will appear on the state’s November ballot. See www.carighttoknow.org.

Medical groups that have endorsed the California Right to Know Ballot Initiative include American Public Health Association, Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles –San Francisco and -Sacramento,  American Academy of Environmental Medicine, American College for Advancement in Medicine, American Medical Students Association and the American Holistic Medical Association.

Also see: Consumers Union statement on AMA position: http://www.consumersunion.org/pub/core_food_safety/018433.html

Statement on the AMA decision by Michael Hansen, PhD, senior scientist at Consumers Union: http://www.consumersunion.org/pub/core_food_safety/018433.html

New report presented at AMA meeting by John Fagan, PhD, “GMO Myths and Truths”: http://earthopensource.org/index.php/reports/58

Also see: Atlantic Monthly, “Debunking the Health Claims of GMO Foods,” by Marion Nestle

  

 

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