Still, when it comes to voluntary labels on non-GMO food, consumers are winning!
The first blow to biotech was in 2010 when a Sixth Circuit court ruled that milk produced with synthetic hormones is different than milk produced without it and struck down a Ohio rule that would have removed "rBGH-free" labels from dairy products. The court found:
- A compositional difference does exist between milk from untreated cows and conventional milk.
- The use of rBGH (rbST) in milk production has been shown to elevate the levels of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), a naturally occurring hormone that in high levels is linked to several types of cancers, among other things.
- rBGH (rbST) use induces an unnatural period of milk production during a cow's "negative energy phase." Milk produced during this stage is considered to be low quality due to its increased fat content and its decreased level of proteins.
- Milk from rBGH-injected cows contains higher somatic cell counts, which makes the milk turn sour more quickly and is another indicator of poor milk quality.
The final blow to the Ohio rule came this week when the state agreed that, instead of revising the rule to comply with the court's opinion, it would abandon it altogether.