US: Senate Approves GMO Food Label Bill

The US Senate has approved a new bill that requires food companies to label products that contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs).  This is the first time such a requirement has been made mandatory in the US, and the new legislation overrides existing state laws.

The new bill is a milder form of the one passed by the state of Vermont, which led to several major suppliers pulling their products from stores in the state.  The proposed legislation allows producers to put a QR code on their packaging instead of printing out the GMO ingredients.  It also allows small companies to print a phone number or a website address which offers details on GMOs included in a particular product.

The bill has been praised by food industry trade bodies, but criticised by environmental groups who say it is not stringent enough.  It will now be voted upon by the House of Representatives, which has also been working on its own GMO requirements.