GMO Labeling Initiative Qualifies For Ballot

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — It’s official: an initiative to require the labeling of genetically modified foods in Oregon has qualified for a statewide vote in November.

The Secretary of State’s Office said Wednesday that it certified 118,780 signatures — well above the 87,213 needed to qualify for the ballot.

If adopted, the initiative by Oregon GMO Right to Know would require manufacturers, retailers and suppliers to label raw and packaged foods produced entirely or partially by genetic engineering.

The measure would not apply to animal feed or food served in restaurants. It would be effective January 2016.

Labeling measures in California and in Washington state failed in recent years. A similar measure was defeated in Oregon in 2002.

Three states — Vermont, Maine and Connecticut — have enacted laws that require labeling of GMOs.

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