Text: S.511 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in Senate (02/12/2015)

 
[Congressional Bills 114th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[S. 511 Introduced in Senate (IS)]

114th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                 S. 511

   To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require that 
    genetically engineered food and foods that contain genetically 
             engineered ingredients be labeled accordingly.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                           February 12, 2015

 Mrs. Boxer (for herself, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Sanders, Mr. Blumenthal, Mrs. 
   Feinstein, Mr. Murphy, Mr. Merkley, Ms. Mikulski, Mr. Reed, Mrs. 
    Shaheen, Mr. Heinrich, Ms. Warren, Mr. Tester, and Mr. Booker) 
introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the 
          Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
   To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require that 
    genetically engineered food and foods that contain genetically 
             engineered ingredients be labeled accordingly.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Genetically Engineered Food Right-
to-Know Act''.

SEC. 2. PURPOSE AND FINDINGS.

    (a) Purpose.--The purposes of this Act are to--
            (1) establish a consistent and enforceable standard for 
        labeling of foods produced using genetic engineering, thereby 
        providing consumers with knowledge of how their food is 
        produced; and
            (2) prevent consumer confusion and deception by prohibiting 
        the labeling of products produced from genetic engineering as 
        ``natural'', and by promoting the disclosure of factual 
        information on food labels to allow consumers to make informed 
        decisions.
    (b) Findings.--Congress finds that--
            (1) the process of genetically engineering food organisms 
        results in material changes and the fact that foods are 
        genetically engineered is of material importance to consumers;
            (2) the Food and Drug Administration requires the labeling 
        of more than 3,000 ingredients, additives, and processes;
            (3) individuals in the United States have a right to know 
        if their food was produced with genetic engineering for a 
        variety of reasons, including health, economic, environmental, 
        religious, and ethical;
            (4) more than 60 countries, including the United Kingdom 
        and all other countries of the European Union, South Korea, 
        Japan, Brazil, Australia, India, China, and other key United 
        States trading partners have laws or regulations mandating 
        disclosure of genetically engineered food on food labels;
            (5) in 2011, Codex Alimentarius, the food standards 
        organization of the United Nations, adopted a text that 
        indicates that governments can decide on whether and how to 
        label foods produced with genetic engineering;
            (6) mandatory identification of food produced with genetic 
        engineering can be a critical method of preserving the economic 
        value of exports or domestically sensitive markets with 
        labeling requirements for genetically engineered foods; and
            (7) the cultivation of genetically engineered crops can 
        have adverse effects on the environment in the form of cross-
        pollination of native plants, increased herbicide usage, and 
        impacts on non-target and beneficial organisms, including the 
        Monarch butterfly.

SEC. 3. AMENDMENTS TO THE FEDERAL FOOD, DRUG, AND COSMETIC ACT.

    (a) In General.--Section 403 of the Federal Food, Drug, and 
Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 343) is amended by adding at the end the 
following:
    ``(z)(1) If it is a food that has been genetically engineered or 
contains 1 or more genetically engineered ingredients, unless the 
ingredients label clearly states that the food has been genetically 
engineered or identifies any genetically engineered ingredients, as 
applicable.
    ``(2) This paragraph does not apply to food that--
            ``(A) is served in restaurants or other similar eating 
        establishments, such as cafeterias and carryouts;
            ``(B) is a medical food (as defined in section 5(b) of the 
        Orphan Drug Act);
            ``(C) would be subject to this paragraph solely because it 
        was produced using a genetically engineered vaccine or drug;
            ``(D) is a food or processed food that would be subject to 
        this paragraph solely because it includes the use of a 
        genetically engineered processing aid (including yeast) or 
        enzyme; or
            ``(E) is a packaged food consisting of materials produced 
        through genetic engineering that do not account for more than 
        nine-tenths of 1 percent of the total weight of the packaged 
        food.
    ``(3) In this paragraph and in paragraph (aa):
            ``(A) The term `genetic engineering' means a process--
                    ``(i) involving the application of in vitro nucleic 
                acid techniques, including recombinant deoxyribonucleic 
                acid (DNA) and direct injection of nucleic acid into 
                cells or organelles;
                    ``(ii) involving the application of fusion of cells 
                beyond the taxonomic family; or
                    ``(iii) that overcomes natural physiological, 
                reproductive, or recombinant barriers and that is not a 
                process used in traditional breeding and selection.
            ``(B) The term `genetically engineered', used with respect 
        to a food, means a material intended for human consumption that 
        is--
                    ``(i) an organism that is produced through the 
                intentional use of genetic engineering; or
                    ``(ii) the progeny of intended sexual or asexual 
                reproduction (or both) of 1 or more organisms that is 
                the product of genetic engineering.
            ``(C) The term `genetically engineered ingredient' means a 
        material that is an ingredient in a food that is derived from 
        any part of an organism that has been genetically engineered, 
        without regard to whether--
                    ``(i) the altered molecular or cellular 
                characteristics of the organism are detectable in the 
                material; and
                    ``(ii) the organism is capable for use as human 
                food.''.
    (b) Restrictions on the Term ``Natural''.--Section 403 of the 
Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 343), as amended by 
subsection (a), is further amended by adding at the end the following:
    ``(aa) If it is a food intended for human consumption that has been 
produced using genetic engineering or that contains one or more 
genetically engineered ingredients and it bears a label, or for which 
there is signage or advertising, containing a claim that the food is 
`natural', `naturally made', `naturally grown', `all natural', or using 
any similar words that would be misleading to a consumer.''.
    (c) Guaranty.--
            (1) In general.--Section 303(d) of the Federal Food, Drug, 
        and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 333(d)) is amended--
                    (A) by striking ``(d)'' and inserting ``(d)(1)''; 
                and
                    (B) by adding at the end the following:
            ``(2)(A) No person shall be subject to the penalties of 
        subsection (a)(1) for a violation of subsection (a), (b), or 
        (c) of section 301 involving food that is misbranded within the 
        meaning of paragraph (z) or (aa) of section 403 if such person 
        (referred to in this paragraph as the `recipient') establishes 
        a guaranty or undertaking that--
                    ``(i) is signed by, and contains the name and 
                address of, a person residing in the United States from 
                whom the recipient received in good faith the food 
                (including the receipt of seeds to grow raw 
                agricultural commodities); and
                    ``(ii) contains a statement to the effect that the 
                food is not genetically engineered or does not contain 
                a genetically engineered ingredient.
            ``(B) In the case of a recipient who, with respect to a 
        food, establishes a guaranty or undertaking in accordance with 
        subparagraph (A), the exclusion under such subparagraph from 
        being subject to penalties applies to the recipient without 
        regard to the manner in which the recipient uses the food, 
        including whether the recipient is--
                    ``(i) processing the food;
                    ``(ii) using the food as an ingredient in a food 
                product;
                    ``(iii) repacking the food; or
                    ``(iv) growing, raising, or otherwise producing the 
                food.
            ``(C) No person may avoid responsibility or liability for a 
        violation of subsection (a), (b), or (c) of section 301 
        involving food that is misbranded within the meaning of 
        paragraph (z) or (aa) of section 403 by entering into a 
        contract or other agreement that specifies that another person 
        shall bear such responsibility or liability, except that a 
        recipient may require a guaranty or undertaking as described in 
        this subsection.
            ``(D) For purposes of this Act, food will be considered not 
        to have been produced with the knowing or intentional use of 
        genetic engineering if--
                    ``(i) such food is lawfully certified to be 
                labeled, marketed, and offered for sale as `organic' 
                pursuant to the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990; 
                or
                    ``(ii) an independent organization has determined 
                that the food has not been knowingly or intentionally 
                genetically engineered and has been segregated from, 
                and not knowingly or intentionally commingled with, 
                foods that may have been genetically engineered at any 
                time, if such a determination has been made pursuant to 
                a sampling and testing procedure that--
                            ``(I) is consistent with sampling and 
                        testing principles recommended by 
                        internationally recognized standards 
                        organizations; and
                            ``(II) does not rely on testing processed 
                        foods in which no DNA is detectable.
            ``(E) In this subsection, the terms `genetically 
        engineered' and `genetically engineered ingredient' have the 
        meanings given the terms in section 403(z).''.
            (2) False guaranty.--Section 301(h) of the Federal Food, 
        Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 331(h)) is amended by 
        inserting ``or 303(d)(2)'' after ``section 303(c)(2)''.
    (d) Unintended Contamination.--Section 303(d) of the Federal Food, 
Drug, and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. 333(d)), as amended by subsection 
(b), is further amended by adding at the end the following:
            ``(3)(A) No person shall be subject to the penalties of 
        subsection (a)(1) for a violation of subsection (a), (b), or 
        (c) of section 301 involving food that is misbranded within the 
        meaning of section 403(z) if--
                    ``(i) such person is an agricultural producer and 
                the violation occurs because food that is grown, 
                raised, or otherwise produced by such producer, which 
                food does not contain a genetically engineered material 
                and was not produced with a genetically engineered 
                material, is contaminated with a food that contains a 
                genetically engineered material or was produced with a 
                genetically engineered material; and
                    ``(ii) such contamination is not intended by the 
                agricultural producer.
            ``(B) Subparagraph (A) does not apply to an agricultural 
        producer to the extent that the contamination occurs as a 
        result of the negligence of the producer.''.
    (e) Promulgation of Regulations.--Not later than 1 year after the 
date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall promulgate proposed 
regulations establishing labeling requirements for compliance in 
accordance with section 403(z) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic 
Act, as added by subsection (a).
                                 <all>

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