Friday, May 9, 2008

United Methodist Church adopts language on labeling of cloned animals and GE plants/animals

This is the text of an email I received from Jaydee Hanson of the Center for Food Safety. Jaydee has been working as a liason between the CFS and various religious groups in the country regarding food biotechnology policies:

Dear Bob,

The United Methodist Church General Conference, the only body that speaks for the entire worldwide denomination, adopted an amendment (See text in bold) to its policy resolution on “Genetic Science” that calls for the labeling of all genetically engineered crops, GE animals, and cloned animals. Final passage of the resolution of which this was a part was 836-26. It is not ‘official’ church policy until Jan. 1, 2009, but it is ok to say the United Methodists called for labeling of cloned animals on April 30, 2008. I believe they are the first US religious body (as opposed to coalitions or councils of churches) that has taken a position. Earlier, when we were petitioning the US FDA, the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and the Ecumenical Eco-justice Network weighed in opposing animal cloning.

1. We support public involvement in initiating, evaluating, regulating, and funding of agricultural genetic research.
We believe the public has an important policy and financial role in ensuring the continuation of research that furthers the goal of a safe, nutritious, and affordable food supply.
We believe that the public should have input into whether a research effort, or its products, will serve an unmet need in food and fiber production and processing. We urge United Methodists to be active participants in achieving this accountability in all areas of the world.
We believe that the benefits of research applications should accrue to the broadest possible public, including farmers and consumers.
1. We support the sustainability of family farms, natural resources, and rural communities and urge that genetic research in agriculture and food products promote these goals.
2. We urge that genetically modified crops and genetically engineered or cloned animal products be labeled so that consumers have a choice in which kind of agricultural products they buy.

Jaydee Hanson

Center for Food Safety &

International Center for Technology Assessment

660 Pennsylvania Ave. SE #302

Washington DC 20003

Please consider the environment before printing this email

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