Two events explore issue of labeling

Two local events this week will address the issue of genetically modified foods and whether labeling should be required.

One of the programs is being organized by supporters of labeling, while the other is being offered by a University of Rhode Island professor of cell and molecular biology who opposes labeling.

The state legislature is considering a bill to require that all foods containing genetically modified ingredients and produce grown from genetically modified seeds be labeled.

The first program will take place at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Ledyard Middle School, at the junction of Routes 12 and 214. Titled "Honest Food Policy?" it will consist of a panel discussion with former U.S. Rep. Rob Simmons of Stonington; state Sen. Cathy Osten, D-Sprague; state Rep. Tim Bowles, D-Ledyard; Ian Skoggard, a member of the United Church of Christ Green Team; and Bill Deusing, executive director of the Connecticut chapter of the Northeast Organic Farmers Association.

Admission is free. For more information, call (860) 536-6407.

The second event will take place from 2 to 6 p.m. Saturday in Room 214 of Olin Auditorium at Connecticut College in New London. Albert Kausch of Stonington, who directs the plant biotechnology laboratory at URI, will lead a free workshop titled "Agriculture, Biotechnology and GMOs: Informing the Debate."

The intention of the workshop is to "put modern DNA-based biotechnology in context and also address the concerns and misconceptions about genetically modified organisms and their application in agriculture," according to a flier for the event.

To register, send an email to

- Judy Benson


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