But the Connecticut Farm Bureau, Connecticut Food Association and corporations like Monsanto, which makes the seeds for GMO crops, say it’s not needed.
“I believe they are spreading fear that is not warranted”, says CT Food Association President, Stan Sorkin.
“We’re going to have expense in this – this is going to drive up the cost of foods, because we’re going to have to maintain different labels, different inventory”, says Henry Talmage, director of the CT Farm Bureau.
Despite majority support among legislators, the GMO labeling bill was shot down at the last minute, raising questions about why that occurred.
“The influence of Monsanto and the Biotech industry is so strong, that even the whisper of a threat, even the thought that there could be a threat of a lawsuit against CT for bringing a GMO labeling bill definitely had an impact on this bill’s death”, says Cook-Littman.
Safety and health concerns should trump cost according to Roy, who agrees with Littman when he says, “the labeling provision was eliminated from the bill due to fears that it opened the state up to a lawsuit. The attorneys for the leaderships and Governor’s office felt the Constitutional rights of Monsanto gave them the power to successfully sue the state.”
“All we have to do is start getting a couple of bodies and then we can ask, how many people do we want dead?” says Roy.
No documented human deaths have been linked to GMO but an experiment conducted at a French University released in September, claims a diet of only genetically modified corn caused tumors and organ damage in rats.
Seth Wulsin isn’t ready to call GMOs a killer, but says he’ll break one law until a different one gets passed.
“Asking for a label on our food is a very minor request, and the fact that they’re so adamant about not granting it, to me, says more about GMOs than anything else”, says Wulsin.
Monsanto says they have been involved in state labeling bills through their membership in associations including the Grocery Manufacturers Association and the Biotechnology Industry Organization.
“In certain states, such as Connecticut, Monsanto has registered lobbyists. We participate to represent our interests, our farmer customers encourage us to be involved…” said Monsanto in a statement released to FOX CT News.
At the capitol, a spokesman says the GMO bill never even made it to the desk of Governor Dannel Malloy, but adds that bipartisan legislative attorneys were concerned about the potential for a lawsuit against the state.