AAFCO Meeting Update
Just when we thought calorie statements would finally become a AAFCO model bill, the Pet Food Institute steps in and stalls things again. During morning meetings Kurt Gallager of PFI stepped forward (twice) in opposition to calorie statements on pet food labels. I stepped up to the microphone and told AAFCO…
‘There is a pet obesity epidemic. The Guaranteed Analysis only requires minimum amount of protein and fat be provided to the consumer. Consumers deserved this calorie information yesterday!
But, the PFI won. Required calorie information is delayed again.
Afternoon session brought a 40 minute presentation from industry (Pet Food Institute, American Feed Industry Association, and National Grain and Feed Association) against any future requirement to label foods if they contain GM (genetically modified) or GE (genetically engineered) ingredients. For 40 minutes these industry representatives told the audience things like…
“GM is no risk”
“there is no difference between GM foods and non GM foods”
“Proposition 37 (in California) was a labeling scheme”
Those in favor of GM labeling “went out and paid for signatures on petitions”
Needless to say, it was ridiculous. After this painful 40 minute presentation in favor hiding GM/GE information from consumers, I went forward and stated to the room…
“This statement is not directed to this panel, but is more of a question to the AAFCO Board of Directors and members of AAFCO. How can AAFCO provide industry a 40 minute opportunity to speak against GM labeling and not allow equal time for opposing opinions?” An AAFCO member stated, “you have opportunity now.” I responded, “no, I’ve had no preparation time. If AAFCO gave 3 industry representatives 40 minutes, will AAFCO provide 3 opposing opinion organizations equal time?” Silence. “How about giving us equal time at the August meeting?” Silence. More Silence. “You think about it and get back to me.”
Later I was told that while I was walking to the microphone to make the above statement, there were groans from several in the audience and one stated “They should turn off the microphone on her.” Seems many here don’t like me or telling the truth to pet food consumers.
I’ll try to update again tomorrow.
Pet Food Industry Trouble-maker