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URGENT: Tell Congress to Protect Food Safety Laws! March 01, 2006 9:42 AM


URGENT: Tell Congress to Protect Food Safety Laws!


This Thursday, March 2, Congress will vote on a bill to gut food safety and labeling laws. H.R. 4167, the National Uniformity for Food Act, would eliminate current state or local laws and prevent the enactment of future laws that impose stricter requirements for food safety than current federal standards. If passed, this dangerous bill would reduce food safety laws to the federal government’s “uniform” lowest common denominator, wiping out laws in at least 30 states from California to Maine. These laws empower consumers with essential information about what’s in our food—such as toxic chemicals, mercury, potential allergens, and genetically engineered ingredients. Given the sweeping implications of this bill, it is shocking that Congress held no public hearings on this issue, essentially putting the interests of big food companies ahead of the health and safety of consumers. Take action today to urge Representative Obey to VOTE NO on H.R. 4167.

Subject: Protect Food Safety Laws!

Dear Representative,

I am writing to strongly urge you to oppose H.R. 4167, the National Uniformity for Food Act.

As a consumer, I want more information about the food I buy for myself and my family, not less. States and local governments have helped consumers like me by addressing gaps in federal standards, ensuring safer food and providing consumers with important label information. H.R. 4167 would undercut the role of state and local governments and reduce food safety laws to the federal government's "uniform" lowest common denominator.

The Congressional Budget Office says that this legislation could eliminate laws in at least 30 states, including laws dealing with labeling of food additives, potential allergens, shellfish, and more. Other state food laws that could be affected address issues of particular importance to specific states or regions, such as catfish labeling laws in Mississippi and Arkansas. Perhaps the most dangerous element of this poorly conceived bill is its potential to strike down California's Proposition 65, which protects public health by requiring warning notices on products that contain ingredients known to cause cancer or birth defects.

Please protect the health of my family and the safety of the food we eat by voting no on H.R. 4167. I will be closely watching the outcome of this vote.


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