Despite common industry concerns, there’s no evidence that requiring food manufacturers to label products that contain genetically engineered (GE) ingredients will increase food prices at the supermarket. According to a new study conducted by recognized food-marketing expert Kai Robertson, changes to a food manufacturer’s product labels have not been found to affect the prices paid by shoppers.
Key findings in the study include the following:
In sum, Just Label It concludes that proposals to change labels of GE food will not affect retail prices paid by shoppers.
Study conducted by the economic consulting firm ECONorthwest found that requiring GE food labels would cost a mere $2.30 per person per year, or less than a penny a day.
Shepherd-Bailey’s assessment of potential costs associated with California’s failed Proposition 37 to require GE food labeling found little or no change in consumer food prices as a result of labeling.
Shepherd-Bailey’s assessment of potential costs associated with Washington state’s Initiative 522 to label GE food, which also lost following a massive industry advertising campaign, similarly predicted no change in consumer food prices as a result of labeling.
Hansen finds that Lesser’s industry-funded study, which predicted a surge in food prices as a result of GE labeling, relied on faulty assumptions about consumer behavior and product reformulation.
In his 2001 report, Byrne wrote that, “When the current labeling regime was introduced in 1997, it did not result in increased costs, despite the horrifying (double-digit) prediction of some interests.”