This Wednesday marks 100 days since Republicans took over the majority in Congress, and “it’s been a disastrous hundred days for the environment,” according to Lisa Archer of Friends of the Earth (FOE). Under Mitch McConnell’s leadership, we’ve seen unprecedented attacks on the EPA, attempts to force through construction of KXL, and chemical safety “reform” in the form of handouts to the chemical industry.
Now, Republicans in Congress are at it again – and this time they’re going after our food system.
Rep. Mike Pompeo recently reintroduced the chemical and junk food industry’s dream bill: HR 1599, otherwise known as the” DARK Act” (Deny Americans the Right to Know). This bill is backed by Monsanto, Dow Chemical, the Koch Brothers and junk food companies like Pepsi. If it passes, it would take away states’ rights to label GMOs.
“For years, we’ve been fighting to label GMOs in states across the country,” says Archer. “We’ve gone up against more than $100 million in Big Food and chemical company dollars and their relentless, misleading PR campaigns.”
Despite the odds, environmental nonprofits like FOE are making big progress: Vermont passed the first GMO labeling law last year, and Oregon voters came within a few thousand votes of passing the second. Since then, many more states have introduced GMO labeling bills. However, the DARK Act would roll back those statewide efforts – all to protect Big Food’s profits.
“Fortunately, there are some Members of Congress on our side,” states Archer. Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) have also reintroduced the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act (HR 913) to make GMO food labeling mandatory across the country.
Now, people across the U.S. are flooding Congress with calls demanding that they stop the DARK Act and support mandatory GMO labels.
Why is the fight for GMO labeling so important? It’s fundamentally about our right to support a food system that’s good for people and the planet.
The science is clear. The pesticides that go hand in hand with GMO crops have catastrophic impacts on our health and our environment. We should have the right to choose to not buy products that damage our health and environment.
It’s no surprise that Republicans in Congress (who are compelled to reward their campaign contributors) are prioritizing junk food and chemical industry interests over their constituents. They think they can get away with it by using industry spin. But together, we can overcome Big Food’s big money and PR campaigns and we can build a safe, sustainable, and transparent food system.
Take Action! Here’s what you can do: click here to retrieve the number you need to call to leave a message with your Representative. FOE has even taken the liberty of scripting a message here for you to say. Add your own words if you feel the need. But whatever you choose to say, make sure they can hear the passion in your voice! Good luck!
Amanda Carlucci has her finger on the pulse of the green movement. Stay up to date on the latest in green activism. You CAN make a difference. Be a part of the movement, and click here to subscribe. It’s anonymous and free!