The Grocery Manufacturers Assn. (GMA) said it will appeal an April 27 federal court ruling denying the organization’s motion to halt implementation of Vermont’s mandatory GMO labeling law pending further litigation.
The District Court’s ruling against GMA’s motion for a preliminary injunction means that Vermont can continue implementing the labeling law, which is set to go into effect in July 2016.
GMA filed a notice of appeal in court May 6 in Vermont federal district court – the first formal step to appeal the previous week’s ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. A legal brief outlining GMA’s grounds for the appeal will be filed with the appellate court in the weeks ahead.
“The court’s opinion in denying our request to block the Vermont law opens the door to states creating mandatory labeling requirements based on pseudo-science and web-fed hysteria,” said Pamela G. Bailey, president of GMA. “If this law is allowed to go into effect, it will disrupt food supply chains, confuse consumers and lead to higher food costs.”
In her preliminary ruling, while not definitively deciding the issue on the merits, the judge offered the view that Vermont could pass a state labeling mandate because no current federal law regarding the Food and Drug Administration’s authority over food labeling preempts state action.
“This court ruling shows why Congress should pass the voluntary uniform GMO labeling bill quickly and federally preempt state mandatory GMO laws,” Bailey said.