The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Organic Consumers Association, Katherine Paul, 207.653.3090

Organic Consumers Association Gathers 105,000 Signatures on Petition Asking Hillary Clinton to Support GMO Labeling


The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) today reiterated its call to Hillary Clinton to support mandatory GMO labeling laws. The OCA has gathered nearly 105,000 signatures so far on a petition asking Hillary Clinton to reverse her position on genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and become a supporter of GMO labeling laws and the transition to sustainable, organic, regenerative agriculture.

"As the official leading Democratic candidate for President in 2016, Hillary Clinton is in a position to lead on one of the most important public health issues of our time--the right to healthful, sustainably grown, pesticide-free food," said Ronnie Cummins, OCA's international director. "It is time for Hillary to stop supporting Monsanto, whose products and technologies are poisoning the environment and public health, and contributing to the world's most dire crisis--global warming.

"It is especially urgent that Hillary reconsider her position on genetically engineered foods and crops in light of the prestigious International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) of the World Health Organization's new report declaring Monsanto's Roundup herbicide (active agent glyphosate), sprayed heavily on 84 percent of all GMO crops, including soy, corn, cotton, canola, and sugar beets, a 'probable carcinogen,'" said Cummins.

After reviewing 44 scientific studies, half of the IARC panel thought that glyphosate should be classified as a Group 1 "known carcinogen," with the other half opting for a Group 2 "probable carcinogen" rating. The IARC has said that as new peer-reviewed studies on the dangerous effects of glyphosate are being published nearly every week, the agency may very well reclassify glyphosate as a "known carcinogen" in the near future.

"As Congress considers an industry-funded bill by Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) that would wipe out states' constitutional rights to pass GMO labeling laws and establish a government-run non-GMO certification program, we call on Hillary Clinton today to reject Pompeo's bill and stand up for the more than 90 percent of Americans who want the same right enjoyed by citizens in 64 other countries--the right to know if our food has been genetically engineered to withstand Monsanto's carcinogenic Roundup herbicide," Cummins said.

In a June 25 speech to the BIO International Convention in San Diego, Calif., Clinton suggested that public opposition to GMOs is based on misinformation, and that the biotech industry just needs to do a better job at public relations. She also spoke out about climate change, saying that global warming is a real problem, no longer open to debate. However, she failed to acknowledge what scientists, including those at the United Nations, say about the clear link between today's industrial, GMO agriculture model and global warming.

New evidence surfaces nearly every month about the link between glyphosate, the key ingredient in Monsanto's Roundup, and a host of chronic, debilitating diseases. Additionally, scientists warn that the GMO agriculture model is failing to live up to its promises, and instead leading to disaster for farmers who are faced with herbicide- and pesticide-resistant superweeds, with no recourse except to resort to increasing amounts of increasingly toxic chemicals.

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is an online and grassroots 501(c)3 nonprofit public interest organization, and the only organization in the U.S. focused exclusively on promoting the views and interests of the nation's estimated 50 million consumers of organically and socially responsibly produced food and other products. OCA educates and advocates on behalf of organic consumers, engages consumers in marketplace pressure campaigns, and works to advance sound food and farming policy through grassroots lobbying. We address crucial issues around food safety, industrial agriculture, genetic engineering, children's health, corporate accountability, Fair Trade, environmental sustainability, including pesticide use, and other food- and agriculture-related topics.