After Prop. 37: What does its defeat mean for the food movement?  »

Apparently I’m on the post-Prop. 37 beat. I don’t even know how I feel about food labeling, you guys! And yet. If it weren’t for food labels, how would we vegans eat? How would anyone with a food allergy get by? It’d be all produce, all the time, and we’d be full of vegetables and miserable (I don’t want to live in a world without Field Roast Italian sausages). Plus, food justice (or whatever) is a vegan issue. Everyone should have access to enough nutritious, delicious food that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.

The Friedman Sprout, “the student newspaper of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, has a neat article by M.E. Malone on the repercussions of its defeat, and the future of the “food movement” (so uncomfortable with that label).

“I am not sure the strict line between the definitions of GMO technology and non-GMO technology is really the right way to distinguish bad technologies from good technologies,” [Parke Wilde, associate professor at the Friedman School] said. Wilde added that there are legitimate concerns about GMO technologies, including “the control of seed varieties by a single corporation and the flawed [Food and Drug Administration] review of proposed GMO salmon,” that are unrelated to the gene manipulation process.

(Ha ha fuck off, GMO salmon. As if farmed salmon weren’t trouble enough.)

TL;DR: Of course we have a right to know what’s in our food. On the other hand, if we don’t sufficiently understand the technologies used in producing both GMO and non-GMO foods, how can we regulate them? At least we can agree on our hatred of monocultures, right?

[Photo by Nuclear Winter via Flickr]


2012 election: What’s up with California’s Proposition 37?  »

Vegansaurus loves voting. It is our right to have it, and our privilege to exercise it. Voting is tops!

That said, actually voting can be terribly confusing, especially here in California, land of the endless ballot propositions! There are always so many, and they are not all as straightforward as 2008’s beloved Prop. 2. This year we’ve got 11, some directly contradicting others ON THE SAME BALLOT, WHY.

KQED’s Calfornia Report recently reported on Prop. 37, “Genetically Engineered Foods Labeling Initiative Statute,” as part of its series on all 11 of California’s 2012 ballot initiatives. Here’s the latest report, by science reporter Amy Standen: 

Prop. 37 is endorsed by our pals at Pepple’s Donuts (check out the signs in the shop!), and the wonderful human beings at Dr. Bronner’s.

On the other hand, Adam of the wonderful Say What, Michael Pollan? blog has a well researched, reasonable, and scathing critique of Prop. 37. He concludes that

… Proposition 37 is bad politics. Dragging ill-informed and uninterested consumers into a dirty political fight and expecting them to make “conscientious” consumer decisions is not the way to spur social progress. And spreading misinformation isn’t going to help that. If Proposition 37 is how the food movement will prove itself, count me out.

For more information on Prop. 37, check out the California Secretary of State’s official guide, and KQED’s ongoing coverage. How do you think you’ll vote? I still have no idea.

[Photo by Nuclear Winter via Flickr]

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