News Alert – April 4, 2013
New Poll Shows 91 Percent of Maine People Support Labeling of Genetically Modified Foods
|Rep. Lance Harvell (R-Farmington) has more than 100 co-sponsors for LD 718, a bill about labeling foods with genetically modified ingredients.
Logan Perkins - Right to Know-GMO Campaign Coordinator; (207) 949-7371
Heather Spalding - Interim Executive Director
Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association; (207) 568-4142
A new scientific poll of Maine voters found 91.1 percent of respondents supported a labeling requirement for foods containing genetically modified ingredients. The poll, released Tuesday and conducted by PanAtlanticSMS Group of Portland, Maine, showed overwhelming support for efforts currently under way to enact GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) labeling legislation in Maine.
"Polls across the country have consistently shown that the vast majority of people want foods containing GMOs to be labeled," said Heather Spalding, interim executive director of MOFGA, the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association. "Nine out of 10 Mainers want the Legislature to require GMO labeling so that they know what is in their food."
MOFGA supports GMO labeling legislation and is working with Representative Lance Harvell of Farmington and more than 100 co-sponsors to pass LD 718, "An Act To Protect Maine Food Consumers' Right To Know about Genetically Engineered Food and Seed Stock."
The terms "genetically modified" (GM) and "genetically engineered" (GE) are often used synonymously.
The bill, which is before the Maine Legislature's Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee, requires disclosure of genetic engineering on most retail food items containing GM ingredients.
“This poll emphasizes the importance of passing a GMO labeling bill to ensure Maine people's right to know what is in their food,” said Representative Harvell.
The poll, conducted by telephone, included 403 respondents from across the state and showed broad support in all major demographic categories. Across genders, incomes and political parties, support for GMO labeling ranged from 88 to 94 percent. PanAtlanticSMS Group included the poll as part of its semi-annual Omnibus, a well-respected barometer of public opinion.
The results are consistent with other polls from around the country, which have indicated broad support for GMO labeling policies. These polls include a 2011 MSNBC poll that found 96 percent of voters believe genetically modified foods should be labeled.