Written by Tyler R. Etter
On August 31, 2015, the Attorney Generals of eight states filed an amicus brief in support of the hotly-contested Vermont GMO labeling bill. The states consist of Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Illinois, New Hampshire, and Washington. Of these states, Connecticut and Maine have enacted similar statutes to Vermont.
The labeling bill will require manufacturers to provide labeling on products to verify that a product is GMO-free. If the product is not GMO free, then a label must be provided that discloses in some manner that the product is produced with genetic engineering.
The bill has been challenged in court under the lead of the Grocery Manufacturers Association. The plaintiffs sought a preliminary injunction against the bill, which was denied in April of 2015. The plaintiffs appealed, stated that the bill will harm both companies and consumers. The plaintiffs have since gained the support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the American Beverage Association, Biotechnology Industry Organization, American Chemistry Council, National Cotton Council of America, and the National Corn Growers Association.
The amicus brief contends that Vermont’s law simply requires a “neutral, accurate factual statement.” The brief claims that the law does not mandate any statement that is not truthful or factual.