New York Considering GMO Legislation

By Joe Gullo

Published 05/16 2014 04:47PM

Updated 05/16 2014 06:19PM

Vermont was the first to make labeling mandatory for genetically modified foods, but 29 other states, including New York are considering similar legislation.

"I'm very health conscious and I want to know what's going into my body," said Lakeland, NY resident Christina Venditti.

Soon, consumers might know more. There's a bill in the New York State Assembly to require labeling genetically modified food or GMOs. But it comes at a price. 

A new study from Cornell says the labeling would cost a family of four roughly $500 more every year at the grocery store due to increased costs for ingredients and packaging.

"By using genetically modified corn and soy beans we're able to increase our yields without increasing costs," Farmer Paul O'Mara said. 

O'mara says it's hard to find food that hasn't been genetically modified. He says the process helps his crops build an immunity to pests.

GMOs are creating controversy around the country. 

What they're doing are taking genes from one plant and putting it in another to make it more resistant to things that threaten it like insects or weeds.

This allows farmers like O'mara to use safer chemicals and eliminate the need for insecticides. His lower costs  means you pay less at the grocery store.

Shoppers like Christina don't mind digging a little deeper for more information on food labels.

"I'm very conscious about what I eat these days I've turned into a health fanatic. I don't buy anything without looking at the labels now," Venditti said.

The GMO labeling bill passed the Assembly's Consumer Affairs and Protection Committee and is pending in the code committee.

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