By: Christopher Doering
The Obama administration said this week that it's aware of growing consumer interest in labeling foods but won't take a position while the Food and Drug Administration reviews citizen petitions on the issue.
White House officials said the FDA is reviewing a pair of citizen petitions about labeling genetically engineered foods.
"This response is just the latest part of an ongoing conversation about how our food is produced. Stay tuned," the White House said Tuesday. "Once the (FDA) makes a decision, we will be sure to let you know in a follow-on update message."
Consumers who want to avoid genetically modified ingredients should look for the Agriculture Department's organic seal on food, the White House said.
Congress also is considering the labeling issue. The House passed legislation last week that would prevent states from requiring labels on foods containing genetically modified ingredients. A similar bill has languished in the Senate.
Currently, food manufacturers can voluntarily label food containing genetically modified ingredients.
As much as 80 percent of packaged foods contain ingredients that have been genetically modified, according to the Grocery Manufacturers Association. More than 90 percent of U.S. corn and soybean crops are grown using genetically modified seeds.
Originally Published: The Des Moines Register