The largest organization representing California family farmers and ranchers thanked voters for rejecting a ballot initiative that would have required foods containing genetically engineered ingredients to carry a special, California-only label. The California Farm Bureau Federation opposed Proposition 37, which voters defeated in the statewide election.
“We’re pleased that voters saw the many flaws in Proposition 37 and rejected it,” California Farm Bureau President Paul Wenger says. “It would have created confusion about food safety and raised food costs, and it would have created all sorts of complications for family farmers and others who grow or sell food.”
Concern For Safety
Despite the defeat of Proposition 37, Wenger says farmers understand that many people want to know more about how their food is produced.
“No matter what crops they grow or how they grow them, farmers want to provide the food and farm products that people want and need,” he says, adding that Farm Bureau supports continued research and education to broaden understanding of genetically engineered foods.
“While it’s true that California farmers don't grow a lot of genetically engineered crops, we believe biotechnology holds promise for a growing population,” Wenger says. “While we seek to fulfill that promise, we will continue to support the current, comprehensive regulatory program that ensures biotech crops are safe.”
Wenger also expressed pleasure with the re-election of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, whom he described as an advocate for California farmers.
“Throughout her career in the Senate, Dianne Feinstein has pressed for reforms important to farmers and ranchers,” he says.
Calif. Farm Bureau has contributed to this article. For more information, go to www.cfbf.com.