Docket Management
Docket: 00D-1598 - Voluntary Labeling Indicating Whether Foods Have Been Developed Using Bioengineering
Comment Number: EC -225

Accepted - Volume 64

Comment Record
Commentor Ms. Linda Flournoy Date/Time 2001-03-10 19:40:17
Organization Camp Dresser & McKee
Category Individual

Comments for FDA General
1. General Comments Related to the same principle by which the FDA requires ingredients to be listed on labels so that consumers can make choices according their health, values and belief systems: so should labeling be REQUIRED (NOT voluntary)for all products containing ANY of the various forms of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). I also think that the paperwork being proposed for registration of qualifying-GMOs by manufactures is overkill for the purpose of simply notifying the public. Yes, the manufacturers should have all of this information in at least two places - available to the public (non-proprietary) and to the FDA (in case of incident). However, the currently proposed forms appear to be such a burden on manufacturers that they are/will be resistant. I believe that only First Level (is it there?) or possibly Second Level (what is its basic category and manufacturer?) reporting is necessary to merely notify the public of the presence of some type of GMO in a product. Such reduced-to-reasonable requirements will lower the burden, and assist in making a blanket regulation (labeling for ALL GM organisms) more palatable. However, to neglect to put this information on labels at all is a removal of our freedom to choose. LET US VOTE WITH OUR DOLLARS, as is appropriate in a capitalist/market society. It is beginning to appear that manufacturers are afraid that they have made a huge investment into products the public will not want. That we WILL vote against their products. But this is OUR RIGHT in a market economy. For many of us, rather than bowing to the inevitable, we will instead remove our purchasing dollars as COMPLETELY as possible from an implicated manufacturer, whether a particular product has GMO's or not. We simply will not take the chance with any of their products. For me and my family, that accounts for tens of thousands of dollars every year, since healthy, good quality food is a major purchase. We do not believe there are sufficient safeguards in place; nor is there/will there be any mechanism for tracing and mitigating any problems which may occur. It would likewise be highly unfair to place the labeling burden upon everyday farmers and business people; those who are carrying on as usual. Growers and manufacturers should have the same ability to choose their seed/ingredients through LABELING OF BULK supplies. IF YOU PUT IT IN; YOU LABEL IT. People have the right to choose, whether guided by health considerations, values, or belief systems. As the public watchdog for Food and Drug Safety, it is your responsibility to uphold our right to choose, and to maintain sufficient safeguards. I ask you to require mandatory labeling by manufacturers for ALL types of GMO's (and other terms in this spirit) and products containing them.

EC -225