Attorney General: Vermont Will be Sued if GMO Bill Passes

By Steph Machado

Published 02/07 2014 06:54PM

Updated 02/07 2014 07:15PM

MONTPELIER - The bill to require foods made with genetically modified organisms to be labeled in Vermont was approved by the Senate Agriculture committee Friday.

It's not headed to the Senate floor yet--there are still legal issues to deal with, and the bill has been referred to the Senate Judiciary committee.

Attorney General Bill Sorrell says Vermont will almost certainly be sued by one of the big corporations that use GMOs. He told lawmakers that Friday.

"I want them to know it's your job to decide whether this should be the law of the state. If you do, I'll do my best to defend the law that you enact," Sorrell said. "But we could lose, and if we lose it'll cost millions of dollars."

The Senate Judiciary committee may choose to include a "trigger clause" in the bill, which was struck down by the Senate Agriculture committee. A trigger clause would delay the law from going into effect until other states have a GMO labeling law, protecting Vermont from being the first to be sued. Maine and Connecticut have both passed GMO labeling laws with trigger clauses that require other states to have laws first.

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