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Food industry sues Vermont over GMO labeling law - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Food industry sues Vermont over GMO labeling law

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

It did not take long for food manufacturers to try to stop Vermont's first-in-the-nation GMO labeling law. Gov. Peter Shumlin just signed the law a few weeks ago, but now a coalition of food industry associations filed a federal suit trying to stop it from taking effect.

The law requires food makers to indicate any genetically modified ingredients on their labels.

The lawsuit filed late Thursday makes multiple claims against the state, including that it violates manufacturers' rights to free speech because it mandates labeling, interferes with their marketing and that federal law already controls what the state GMO law is attempting to cover.

Attorney General Bill Sorrell told WCAX News Thursday evening that he has not yet seen the suit, but he and his staff are prepared. He says labeling GMO ingredients is no different that labeling salt content. He expects defending the suit could cost more than $1 million. Supporters of the GMO law in Montpelier anticipated that and set up a legal defense fund. So far, it has only raised $15,000.

In a statement, Gov. Peter Shumlin, D-Vermont, said, "My office has not yet seen or reviewed the filing, but this is not unexpected. Consumers deserve to know what is in their food, and Vermont will continue to push for common-sense labeling on packaged foods containing Genetically Modified Organisms. Now, as we expected all along, that fight will head to the courts."

Click here to read the lawsuit.

Click here for more stories on GMO labeling.

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