Gwyneth Paltrow Visits Capitol Hill to Advocate for Mandatory GMO Labeling

08/05/2015 at 05:40 PM ET

Gwyneth Paltrow
Kevin Mazur/Getty

Gwyneth Paltrow has taken her passion for healthy eating to Capitol Hill.

The actress and her mother, Blythe Danner, met with lawmakers in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday to push for mandatory genetically modified organism (commonly knowns as GMO) labeling on food products.

“I’m not here as an expert,” the Goop founder said. “I’m here as a mother, an American mother, who honestly believes that I have the right to know what’s in the food I feed my family. I’m not an intensely political person.”

Paltrow — in support of the coalition “Just Label It,” which counts Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jillian Michaels, Sara Gilbert among its celebrity advocates — appeared in opposition to the “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act,” which its critics dubbed the “Deny Americans the Right to Know or DARK Act. The bill, which passed in the House about two weeks ago, would block states from requiring labels identifying food made with GMOs.

Last week, Paltrow took to her Facebook with a petition against the bill, that was also reposted by her good friend Cameron Diaz.

“Next week I am going to DC to speak with members of the Senate about voting against a law that would let genetically modified organisms into our food supply without any labels!,” she wrote. “….The evidence suggests that GMO’s are an environmental disaster, both in the long term and in the short. But I am not asking you to weigh in on whether they are good or bad. We just want a label! We have a right to know what is in our food like the 64 other countries who label or don’t allow GMO’s at all.”

The petition garnered over 200,000 signatures in just six days.

“We would love to, by the time the House comes back in September, to have half a million signatures,” said Paltrow.

Opponents of the labeling movement say there isn’t a need for it. The Coalition for Safe and Affordable Food claimed in a statement that mandatory labels “would create a patchwork of state mandates that would slow interstate commerce and drive up food costs for American families.”

–Michelle Ward Trainor

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Leen512 on

Finally something Gwenyth speaks about I agree with! We need to have labels identifying GMO’s. GMO’s are the worst thing our government has done to us and the repercussions will last a lifetime, if not more. We need to STOP this madness.
Look into GMO’s and make an educated decision on what you want to put into your body!

ami on

Good for her!!! North America is run by corporations.. that our food not be labelled is unfathomable.

jeffwinterwolfhewitt on

Gwyneth Paltrow Visits Capitol Hill to Advocate for Mandatory GMO Labeling

She should stop advocating like herself.

Me on

It is wonderful to FINALLY see this movement gain national momentum!!!

Jennifer on

I do not like or agree with anything this typically out-of-touch woman says, except this. Consumers have the right to know what is in the food they purchase. It is about having the information readily available so that you can make the choice that you feel is best for your family! It’s just a label. The fact that so many big companies like Monsanto don’t want us to know what is in our food speaks volumes…

nope on

if there is “nothing wrong” with GMO, why cant the foods be labeled as such?

KT on

FINALLY, something is trying to be done about this! We have a RIGHT to know what is in our food. The European Union does NOT allow GMOs in their countries, and the U.S. is trying to push them to accept them. Monsanto (the maker of GMOs) is a multi-billion dollar company with numerous politicians and lobbyists in their pocket. It is criminal. Label all GMO products now so we can choose what is best for our own health!

Buh-bye on

“an American mother”? I thought she left the US because, in her words, we’re not able to carry on intelligent conversations at the dinner table? This is one chick I hope leaves the US for good!

Maddi on

There’s a strong scientific consensus that GMOs are safe. They also provide a lot of environmental benefits like drought tolerance, less pesticides, less land use, less tilling, more nutrition, etc. There is no scientific basis for labeling GMOs and with people so fearful about them, a label would be a bad idea. There’s no such thing as a “right to know” irrelevant information about food.

Anna M. on

YEAH! Thank you Gwenyth. I sincerely hope more celebrities get on this band wagon and campaign for labeling. Just on a side note, Hilary Clinton has been quoted as saying there is nothing wrong with GMOs.
Labeling is needed so the consumer can choose for themselves.

lex on

She’s an actress, not a scientist. She should leave this kind of lobbying to the people who actually know what they’re talking about.

Marie on

Thank you, Gwenyth! Other countries allow their citizens to know if their food is made with GMOs. The United States is supposed to be about freedom. You can’t have freedom and not divulge the information necessary to make informed decisions. Someone hiding the truth is someone afraid of the truth. Label it! I want the freedom to choose. I hope the other posters here who support “Just Label It,” sign the petition. I just did. It takes less than a minute.

Thomas Baldwin on

From a scientist

The Question: Why not label “GMO” on products made by laboratory modifications.

The Answer: A single “GMO” label is against the scientific consensus, in that it portrays an inherent risk in the process of genetic modification. The scientific consensus says that the process of inserting genes (making 1 – 10 kilobase change in an already highly variable 1-10 gigabase genome) is not a risk. This is compounded by the precision of insertion. The entire genome is sequenced, metabolites are analyzed, the proteins are cataloged, the expresome is sequenced and quantitated, smRNA, and methylation patterns.
The second aspect of this issue is a creationist view of genetics. Opponents of these technique believe a gene or a protein belong to one species. View any phylogenetic tree or run any alignment of genes or proteins will clearly demonstrate conservation of functionality and the high rate of genes sharing by horizontal gene transfer.

Interpretation: the GMO label suggests the process of inserting a gene into crop is a problem. We have greater control of genetics then most people realize and have complete control of every aspect of the crop. The real contention, beyond the uninformed fear, is with the function of the gene inserted.
Furthermore, our understanding of gene function, time and time again, demonstrate our ability to take a gene or a cluster of genes from one organism and accurately predict how they will function in another organism (Transgenics).

Suggestion: Instead of labeling products with a single GMO label, label them by their product name. GMwatch will have a list to cater to unscientific fears so someone can block all biotechnology products. For the rest of us, working on scientific information, we can select individual technologies, regardless of the process, based on their desired traits.

Social perspective: Demanding or caving to a simple “GMO” label is the equivalent of “teach the controversy” in evolution. There is just as much support for either in the scientific literature and both are supported by fundamentalist held believes over science.

Conclusion: Shifting your perspective away from an unscientific worry about the process of genetic modification, to instead the end products of what the modification does. This will greatly help your cause and open yourself up to knew possibility these products could help the environment and achieve global food stability.

Vamanos on

I hope more celebrities back this and give financial support.

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