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Policy Plate BLOG

Your daily serving of food and farm policy.

Policy Plate: GE Labeling Would Cost Consumers Nothing

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Requiring food manufacturers to label products that contain genetically engineered (GE) ingredients will not increase food prices at the supermarket, according to an independent study released today by the national Just Label It campaign.

The study, conducted by food marketing expert Kai Robertson, found no evidence connecting changes in food labels to supermarket prices. Robertson is an independent consultant who worked for the Food Marketing Institute and most recently ran BSR's food, beverage and agriculture advisory practice.

Robertson identified the key factors that influence retail prices, including consumer demographics and rival pricing behavior, along with market, chain and store characteristics. Wholesale prices have less of an effect on retail prices than these demand-related forces, and there is no evidence that label changes affect wholesale prices.

"Food processors regularly make changes to the labels of their products - as part of ongoing product innovation to anticipate and meet changing consumer demands and for other marketing and regulatory reasons," Robertson wrote. "There are no studies that document the impact of changes to a product's label on prices charged by supermarkets."

Read the entire study here.

Table Scraps:

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch and Dallas Morning News have more coverage on the release of EWG’s City Slickers report.

Bloomberg News continues its special report on crop insurance by examining fraud within the subsidy program.

Tweet of the Day:

@sustainableag new NSAC post: How many years does it take to write a farm bill? 

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