Committee to Hold Hearing on Biotech Labeling Legislation in May

first_imgHouse Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) held a meeting this week where he outlined a timetable for his committee to consider the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act.The legislation, introduced earlier this year by Reps. Mike Pompeo (R-KS) and G.K. Butterfield (D-NC), would provide a uniform, science-based approach to national food labeling.According to Upton, the full Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on the legislation in May, followed by a mark-up by the Health Subcommittee in June and mark-up by the full Committee in late July or September.Upton emphasized that the decision by a Circuit Court judge last week not to overturn a bill enacted by the State of Vermont on the basis that it violates the Commerce Clause on disruption of interstate commerce could lead to a proliferation of similar legislation in other states, and an unmanageable “patchwork quilt” of different state laws and regulations nationwide.He indicated that, unlike last year when the Pompeo-Butterfield bill was not taken up by his committee, the chances of moving it through the House and the Senate are better this year. Upton called on members of the Grocery Manufacturers of America and its allies in the food and agriculture sectors to increase their efforts to add additional sponsors to the House bill, and to push for similar action in the Senate.  ASA is a strong supporter of the legislation, which would provide for federal preemption of state biotech labeling laws and require the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish standards for voluntary labeling of products that do not contain biotech ingredients.The American Soybean Association (ASA) attended the meeting with Upton.last_img

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