Farm Bureau supports science-based labeling bill

congressThe nation’s largest agricultural organization has voiced support for legislation that would require science-based consumer product labeling.

“To fulfil their purpose of helping consumers make informed choices based on facts, food labels must be science-based,” American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall said June 7 in reference to S. 3019, the recently introduced Accurate Labels Act. “Congress should ensure that food labels are consistent, clear and credible. We support new legislation to make ‘smart labels’ the standard, uniform vehicle to accomplish that.”

The bipartisan bill was introduced by Sen. Jerry Moran of Kansas and Reps. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois and Kurt Schrader of Oregon. It is intended to provide U.S. consumers with clear, accurate, meaningful nutrition information and would amend the Fair Packing and Labeling Act.

“Our labeling requirements on the federal, state and local levels must be based on credible science so we can provide consumers with accurate, relevant and critical information pertaining to nutritional facts,” Moran asserted. “Not only do inaccurate labels confuse consumers, they increase prices at the point of sale and create unnecessary new regulatory burdens placed on farmers and small businesses.”

The Accurate Labels Act would establish science-based criteria for all additional state and local labeling requirements; allow state-mandated product information to be provided through smartphone-enabled “smart labels” and on websites; and ensure that covered product information is risk-based.

In addition to Farm Bureau’s support, the bill has received support from the American Chemistry Council, the Coalition for Accurate Product Labels, the Grocery Manufacturers Association and the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives.

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