Proposition 37

A controversial television ad in opposition to Proposition 37, the bill that could make California the first U.S. state to require labeling of foods containing genetically modified ingredients, was pulled earlier this week.

The television spot in question featured a Stanford University professor and the founding director of the FDA Office of Technology, Dr. Henry I. Miller M.D. According to attorneys for the Proposition 37 campaign, Stanford’s presence on the screen violates the university’s own policy, which bans the use of university staff or name by consultants.

Miller, who is not a Stanford professor but a research fellow at the Hoover Institution, a think tank based on Stanford’s campus, has spoken out against the measure, saying the labeling requirements “make no sense,” because if the measure passes, it would only require labeling on certain foods containing GMOs, while leaving others unmarked, such as meat, eggs and dairy that came from animals fed GMO grains.

Ultimately, the university agreed with the Proposition 37 campaign, according to spokesperson, Lisa Lapin, who told the LA Times that Stanford’s name and campus (in the background of the video) will be removed from the ad because the university “doesn’t take any positions on candidates or ballot measures, and we do not allow political filming on campus.”

The No on 37 campaign is being funded by large food manufacturers and the biotech industry itself. Seed and pesticide giant, Monsanto, has already donated more than $7 million to the “No” campaign—nearly twice as much as what the Prop 37 campaign has raised in total.

The No camp is positioning 37 as a “costly food bill,” that they claim could cost California millions of dollars. But, recent ads by the opposition were found to be full of deceptions and misinformation according to a fact sheet released by the Prop 37 campaign.

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Image: CA Right to Know