USA: Yes on 522 Campaign
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
With 66% of Washington State voters surveyed in favor of GMO labeling, the Yes on 522 campaign has raised more than US$3.5m (€2.6m) in cash and pledges to date, Compass Natural Reports. Just 22% of voters indicated they will oppose I-522, the state initiative to label GMOs in foods. The bill will appear on the November statewide ballot and in early voting, after more than 350,000 signatures were submitted to the state legislature in January. A recent voter survey found that support in the state for GMO labeling is broad and deep, as significant majorities of Democrats, Independents and Republicans support labeling, as do majorities of every age group and every region of the state. Notably, the poll found that support for labeling could withstand a barrage of opposition attacks. After voters hear one message in favor of labeling and six messages against, support for I-522 holds at 64%, while opposition only increases to 29%.
A similar measure in California in 2012 also enjoyed more than 60% support early in the campaign, but lost by less than 3 percentage points after US$46m ads by Prop. 37 opponents, donated from the biotech, agribusiness and mainstream food sectors. Proponents of the GMO labeling bill, however, say things may be different now in Washington.To date, the Yes on 522 campaign has raised more than US$2.5 million with another $1 million in hard pledges committed, and has spent less than US$350,000. The No on 522 campaign committee, which opposes GMO labeling, has reported raising nearly US$1m to date from just five pro-biotech interests, including major pesticide companies, and mainstream food companies via the Grocery Manufacturers Association. A list of No on 522 donors is available here.
In a letter to donors, Yes on 522 finance committee member David Bronner wrote, “Key in-state endorsements continue to line up, including Washington Conservation Voters, Washington Nurses Association, and prominent fishing companies and organizations. Key alliances are being built with wheat farmer, apple grower and salmon fishery spokespeople, and earned media continues to go our way. A perfect storm is brewing with the GMO wheat contamination compromising Washington wheat exports, and imminent FDA approval of GMO salmon galvanizing the fishing sector. The Yes on 522 campaign is night and day better than Prop. 37, as we've all collectively learned and improved our game”. More information on the Yes on 522 campaign is available here: www.Yeson522.com
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