Key Points in CT GE Labeling Bill

Key points to note in Connecticut’s GE labeling bill are Definitions and Governing Authority:

(See the full description on our Current Legislation page)

Section 2. Definitions

(16) “Natural food” means food (A) which has not been treated with preservatives, antibiotics, synthetic additives, artificial flavoring or artificial coloring; [and] (B) which has not been processed in a manner that makes such food significantly less nutritive; and (C) which has not been genetically engineered, as defined in section 2 of this act. Processing of food by extracting, purifying, heating, fermenting, concentrating, dehydrating, cooling or freezing shall not, of itself, prevent the designation of such food as “natural food”;

(19) “Organically grown” means produced through organic farming methods, which involve a system of ecological soil management and mechanical or biological methods to control insects, weeds, pathogens and other pests and which rely on crop rotation, crop residues, composted animal manures, legumes, green manures, composted organic waste or mineral-bearing rocks and not genetically engineered, as defined in section 2 of this act;

Sec. 2. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2013) For purposes of this section and section 3 of this act:

(3) “Genetically engineered” or “genetic engineering” means a process whereby any food intended for human consumption (A) is produced from an organism or organisms in which the genetics are materially altered through the application of: (i) In vitro nucleic acid techniques, including recombinant DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) techniques, the direct injection of nucleic acid into cells or organelles, encapsulation, gene deletion and doubling, or (ii) methods of fusing cells that do not fall within the same taxonomic family, that overcome natural physiological reproductive or recombinant barriers and that are not techniques used in traditional breeding and selection such as conjugation, transduction and hybridization; (B) is treated with a material described in subparagraph (A) of this subdivision, except manure that is used as a fertilizer for a raw agricultural commodity; or (C) contains an ingredient, component or substance described in subparagraph (A) of this subdivision.

(4) “Organism” means any biological entity capable of replication, reproduction or transferring genetic material;

Sec. 3. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2013) (a) On and after October 1, 2014, any food, seed or seed stock offered or intended for retail sale in this state that is, or may have been, entirely or partially genetically engineered, except a processed food in which one or more processing aids or enzymes were produced or derived from genetic engineering, shall be labeled as follows: (1) In the case of food for retail sale contained in a package, by the manufacturer, distributor or retailer of the food, with the clear and conspicuous words: “Produced with Genetic Engineering”; (2) in the case of food that is a raw agricultural commodity, on the package offered for retail sale or, in the case of any such commodity that is not separately packaged or labeled, on the retail store shelf or bin that holds such commodity displayed for sale, by the retailer, with the clear and conspicuous words: “Produced with Genetic Engineering”; and (3) in the case of any seed or seed stock, on the container holding the seed or seed stock displayed for sale, the sales receipt, or any label identifying ownership or possession of the commodity, by the manufacturer or distributor, with the clear and conspicuous words: “Produced with Genetic Engineering”.

Governing Authority

(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of chapter 418 of the general statutes, the Commissioner of Consumer Protection, in consultation with the Commissioners of Agriculture, Energy and Environmental Protection and Public Health, may adopt regulations, pursuant to chapter 54 of the general statutes, to implement and enforce the provisions of this section.

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