Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Pro and anti GMO labelling groups fined

Both groups opposing and favouring GMO labelling have been fined for funding violations in a vote on the issue in Washington State.

An Iowa-based organization that supported the 2013 vote on a proposal to require labeling of genetically modified foods has been fined nearly $320,000 over campaign finance violations.

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson said Thurston County Superior Court Judge Gary Tabor issued the this week against Food Democracy Action.

The group must also pay the state's legal fees and trial costs.

Earlier this month, another Thurston County judge ordered  the Grocery Manufacturers Association, which is against the proposal, to pay $18 million in civil fines for concealing the true sources of $11 million in contributions received from some of the nation's biggest food and beverage companies.

Ferguson said Food Democracy Action collected almost $300,000 from its supporters and transferred $200,000 of that to support Initiative 522, but didn't register its political action committee or identify its 3,100 donors until after the election.

Voters turned thumbs down on mandatory GMO labeling.