Food and ag chemical companies dumping over $34 Million against Prop 37

BERKELEY
October 3, 2012 9:00pm
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•  Monsanto alone outspends all of the “Yes” side

•  But survey indicates the money may be wasted


If food and agriculture chemical companies get their money’s worth, Californians will be persuaded to keep things just as they are when it comes to food labeling.

The industries lined up against Proposition 37, which would require labeling of genetically modified foods, have dumped $34.5 million into their campaign, compared to just $4.1 million mustered by those in favor of it, according to figures reported by the nonpartisan campaign finance information group MapLight.org.

The proposition, if passed, would require labeling of food sold to consumers made from plants or animals with genetic material changed in specified ways. It would prohibit marketing such food, or other processed food, as natural, although there are exemptions.

But will the spending by opponents persuade voters? If a recent University of Southern California-Los Angeles Times survey holds up through election day, more checks – and bigger ones – will have to be written.

In the survey, released Sept. 27, even when presented with information about how much regulation might cost the cash-strapped state, a majority of voters support the ballot initiative.

Sixty-one percent of Californians favor Proposition 37 and labeling genetically engineered food, while 25 percent of voters are opposed, the survey said. Forty-seven percent said they support the ballot initiative ‘strongly,’ while 16 percent were ‘strongly’ opposed.

Here are the top ten contributors, according to a MapLight analysis of Secretary of State data through Sept. 30,

“Yes” on Prop 37:

1. MERCOLA.COM HEALTH RESOURCES LLC $1,100,000

2. NATURE'S PATH FOODS U.S.A. INC. FINE NATURAL FOOD PRODUCTS $610,709

3. DR. BRONNER'S MAGIC SOAPS ALL-ONE-GOD-FAITH INC. $358,883

4. ORGANIC CONSUMER ORGANIZATIONS' COMMITTEE FOR THE RIGHT TO KNOW ABOUT GMOS (unitemized contributions) $335,122

5. WEHAH FARM, INC., DBA LUNDBERG FAMILY FARMS $250,000

6. ALEX BOGUSKY $100,000

7. AMY'S KITCHEN $100,000

8. CLIF BAR & COMPANY $100,000

9. GREAT FOODS OF AMERICA $100,000

10/ ORGANIC CONSUMERS ASSOCIATION $92,468

“No” on Prop 37

1. MONSANTO COMPANY $7,100,500

2. E.I. DUPONT DE NEMOURS & CO. $4,900,000

3. BASF PLANT SCIENCE $2,000,000

4. DOW AGROSCIENCES LLC $2,000,000

5. BAYER CROPSCIENCE $2,000,000

6. PEPSICO, INC. $1,716,300

7. NESTLE USA, INC. $1,169,400

8. COCA-COLA COMPANY $1,164,400

9. CONAGRA FOODS $1,076,700

10. SYNGENTA CORPORATION $1,000,000

If approved by voters, the initiative would become the first of its kind in the United States.


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