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GMO labeling measure losing steam?

The onslaught of commercials castigating Initiative 522, the genetically engineered food labeling measure on the November ballot, may be taking their toll.

A new survey by The Elway Poll shows support for I-522 has dropped precipitously in the last month. In September, about two-thirds of voters surveyed said they supported the measure, which requires many foods bought at the store to carry labels if they have genetically modified ingredients. Only about one voter in five opposed it.

In the latest poll, that support is down to 46 percent, and opposition up to 42 percent. With the poll's margin of error at 5 percent, that's a statistical tie. More concerning for supporters could be that it has dipped below 50 percent support, because undecided voters tend to vote No if they remain undecided at the point they must cast their ballots.

The Seattle Times broke down the Elway Poll numbers this week. King TV had similar results from a separate poll.

The latest Public Disclosure Commission reports show the No campaign, funded in large part by Monsanto, DuPont and large food and beverage companies contributing to the Grocery Manufacturers Association, have spent about $13.5 million. The Yes campaign, which has collected large amounts from some natural food and cosmetic product companies, but also has hundreds of small donations from Washington and around the country, has spent about $5.4 million.

  
  

AP: Ferguson suing anti GMO labeling donor

Attorney General Bob Ferguson held a press conference this morning to announce a lawsuit against a group that has given some $7 million to the campaign against Initiative 522. Here's an updated report from Mike Baker of the Associated Press:

SEATTLE (AP) — Washington’s attorney general accused a food industry group Wednesday of violating state campaign finance laws for how it collected and spent more than $7 million to oppose a food labeling initiative…

 

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I-522 fight over pet food

The opening salvo in the battle over the proposal to label genetically modified foods includes ammunition that hit the mark last year in California: Food you buy for Rover would have to be labeled if it contains those products, recent commercials for opponents say, but steaks you throw on the grill would not.

Wrong on both counts, say supporters of Initiative 522. Pet food isn't covered by the initiative, but genetically modified meats, would have to be labeled – if they ever reach the local supermarket.

Each campaign can produce legal theories of the state’s complicated initiative case law to support their claims. The Yes campaign has mounted a response ad which the No campaign is actively rebutting.

The average voter might wonder whether it’s worth fighting about…

 

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Today’s fun video: Taking on Monsanto

 

Daily Show takes on Monsanto in its fight with farmers over seeds.

Which makes it kind of interesting that many farmers are siding with Monsanto in the current campaign over genetically engineered foods and Initiative 522.

No on I-522 money flooding in from out of state

OLYMPIA – In another sign that Washington will be the national battleground this fall over genetically altered foods, opponents of a ballot measure requiring those products to be labeled raised almost $1 million last month.

None of it came from Washington state. . .

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Front Porch: Grocery store stalker makes corn sweeter

All I wanted was some corn to throw on the barbecue.

But my Saturday shopping took on a surreal turn when I was accosted by a stranger while perusing produce. As I slid an ear of corn into a bag, a woman said, “Stop! Don’t buy that! That’s genetically modified corn! Do you want to be sterile?”

Bemused, I put another ear of corn in the bag and met the stranger’s eye. “Ma’am,” I replied. “I have four sons; at this point in my life sterility would be a blessing.”

I thought that would put an end to her meddling, but I’d severely underestimated the tenacity of the PCGSP (Politically Correct Grocery Store Police).

Agitated, the woman poked the ear of corn in my hand. “Did you know if you plant that in the ground it WON’T grow?” The produce guy caught my eye and winced. More here. Cindy Hval, SR

Have you ever been tempted to berate someone for their grocery purchases? What would you have done if you'd been in my shoes?

Idaho farmers sue Monsanto

Farmers in Idaho have filed a federal lawsuit against seed giant Monsanto after genetically engineered wheat was found in an eastern Oregon field, the Associated Press reports.

The farmers, represented by a Boise law firm, filed the federal lawsuit Friday contending that Monsanto's development of Roundup Ready wheat resulted in increased production costs and lowered prices because the genetically engineered wheat is likely to infiltrate the non-genetically engineered wheat supply; the discovery of the Roundup Ready wheat growing in Oregon in May prompted Japan to suspend some wheat imports. Read more. Betsy Russell SR

I'll share my own GMO story in tomorrow's column. What are your thoughts about Monsanto and GMO products?

Idaho farmers sue Monsanto over GMO wheat

Farmers in Idaho have filed a federal lawsuit against seed giant Monsanto after genetically engineered wheat was found in an eastern Oregon field, the Associated Press reports. The farmers, represented by a Boise law firm, filed the federal lawsuit Friday contending that Monsanto's development of Roundup Ready wheat resulted in increased production costs and lowered prices because the genetically engineered wheat is likely to infiltrate the non-genetically engineered wheat supply; the discovery of the Roundup Ready wheat growing in Oregon in May prompted Japan to suspend some wheat imports. A handful of lawsuits have been filed in other courts around the country over the same issue; click below for a full report from AP reporter Rebecca Boone.

GMO food labeling initiative likely headed to ballot

Supporters of I-522 wheel signed petitions into the Secretary of State's offfice on Thursday.

OLYMPIA — The state's voters are likely to be asked next ffice.all whether food that contains genetically modified organisms must say so on its label to be sold in Washington.

Supporters of a ballot measure to require such labels filed petitions with an estimated 350,000 signatures Thursday, more than 100,000 more than required to qualify an initiative to the Legislature. If the signatures pass inspection, it will be sent to the Legislature during the upcoming session.

Supporters like Chris McManus of University Place, who managed the signature drive, said the proposal is simply about informing the public. . .

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