An Act To Protect Maine Food Consumers' Right To Know about Genetically Engineered Food and Seed Stock
Sec. 1. 22 MRSA c. 565 is enacted to read:
GENETICALLY ENGINEERED PRODUCTS
§ 2591. Definitions
As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following meanings.
§ 2592. Disclosure requirements for genetically engineered food
(1) Grows, raises or otherwise produces that food or seed stock without knowledge that the food or seed stock was created from other seed or other food that was genetically engineered; and
(2) Obtains a sworn statement from the person from whom the food or seed stock was obtained that the food or seed stock was not knowingly genetically engineered and was segregated from and not knowingly commingled with a food or seed stock component that may have been genetically engineered;
§ 2593. Third-party protection
§ 2594. Enforcement
§ 2595. Affidavit
The commissioner shall develop an affidavit form that may be provided by a producer or grower of food or seed stock to distributors and retailers and that may be included in shipments of food or seed stock within the State certifying that the food or seed stock being sold or shipped is not subject to the disclosure requirements of this chapter.
Sec. 2. Contingent effective date; contingent repeal. The Commissioner of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry shall monitor legislative activities in other states and certify to the Secretary of State and the Revisor of Statutes when legislation substantially similar to this Act has been adopted in at least 5 other states or in a state or states with a population or combined population of at least 20,000,000. Those sections of this Act that enact the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 22, chapter 565 take effect 30 days after the date of the commissioner's certification. If no certification has been made by the commissioner pursuant to this section by January 1, 2023, this Act is repealed on that date.
This bill requires disclosure of genetic engineering at the point of retail sale of food and seed stock and provides that food or seed stock for which the disclosure is not made is considered to be misbranded and subject to the sanctions for misbranding. The bill provides that food or seed stock may not be labeled as natural if it has been genetically engineered. The bill exempts products produced without knowledge that the products, or items used in their production, were genetically engineered; animal products derived from an animal that was not genetically engineered but was fed genetically engineered food; and products with only a minimum content produced by genetic engineering. The bill also provides that the disclosure requirements do not apply to restaurants, alcoholic beverages or medical food. The disclosure provisions are administered by the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.