Chemical Giants Spend Millions To Fight GMO Food Labeling

For Immediate Release: 
Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Oakland, Calif. -- Americans eat their weight yearly in genetically engineered food, much of it created by large chemical and pesticide companies funding an expensive ad campaign to defeat the common-sense Proposition 37 to label genetically engineered foods in California.

“If genetically engineered ingredients are good for you, why do these companies want to keep you in the dark?” said Ken Cook, president of the Environmental Working Group and a resident of California. “Americans have a right to know what's in their food so we can make an informed decision for ourselves.”

Anti-Proposition 37 ads are urging consumers to trust corporate giants like Monsanto, Bayer and DuPont, which have long records of releasing toxic pollution into communities’ water and air and now claim that genetically engineered ingredients hidden in food are safe.

In fact, neither the government nor independent research institutions have conducted health testing or long-term monitoring of the health dangers of genetically modified foods. The only studies that exist have been performed by seed companies that make so-called genetically engineered organisms.

To underscore this point, the Environmental Working Group’s Yes on 37 Committee is releasing a new web ad titled: Trust Monsanto, DuPont and Bayer Chemical?

Go here to watch:

Highlights from Monsanto, DuPont and Bayer:

  • For nearly 40 years, Monsanto dumped millions of pounds of highly toxic PCBs into a local river and open pit landfills in Anniston, Alabama, and concealed that information from the community for decades. To date, Monsanto has contributed more than $7 million to the effort to stop Californian’s right to know if their food was made with GE ingredients.
  • According to internal documents, the DuPont Company hid its own studies that showed human health could be at risk from exposure to a chemical used in its Teflon products and found in many different food containers. The chemical in question, PFOA, has been detected in the blood of millions of Americans, including babies in the womb. DuPont has contributed $4.9 million to the No on 37 Campaign and is its second most important financial backer.
  • In 2003, Bayer CropScience was caught paying students to drink a toxic pesticide as part of the company’s research. When this human experiment was uncovered, legal experts cited possible violations of the Nuremberg Code, an international code of ethics for clinical research drafted after Nazi war crime trials found 16 German doctors guilty of cruel human experimentation. To date, Bayer has contributed $2 million to the effort to kill Prop 37.

“These companies are spending millions to prevent a simple label from being added to foods that have been genetically engineered,” Cook said. “They want to assure us Californians that ingredients manipulated in a lab is perfectly safe to eat. Unfortunately, we’ve seen this movie from the chemical companies before, and it almost never ends well for human health and the environment.”