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Sarah R. Bratko, Esq.
Vice President of Advocacy and General Counsel
401-223-1120, ext. 115
RIHA testifies on H 7093- This bill would require that food and food products derived from or containing genetically modified organisms be labeled as such by the manufacturer, retailer or other person before putting it on the market for sale in Rhode Island. This act would take effect upon passage.
RIHA asked to have restaurants exempted from this bill. Our lobbyist brought a meal sample and explained the ingredients for it and how the supplier may get produce from one location one day and another location the next day. She was asked why it wouldn't be possible to just require the supplier to get the food from those promising GMO free food like General Mills is going to do with Cherios and Ben and Jerry's is doing with ice cream. The answer was the more extensive the menu, the more complicated the ingredients and the more places those ingredients come from.
The committee members seemed to understand and sympathize with that argument. They also seemed to understand that the restaurant menu logistics would become a nightmare. A comment was made that restaurants are exempt in some statutes in other states.
This bill has some legs and we need to be diligent about making sure the exemption is added.