Are you concerned that nano-ingredients in foods sold in Australia don’t have to be labelled? Please make a submission to Australia’s national review of food labelling and add your voice to those calling for nano and GM ingredients in foods to face strict labelling to give us all a choice about eating them. Some dot points for you to consider including in your submission are below.

The most relevant question asked by the review committee is copied below, along with some points you may consider making in your submission.

Q19 In what ways can information disclosure about the use of these technological developments [nanotechnology, gene manipulation, food irradiation] in food production be improved given the available state of scientific knowledge, manufacturing processes involved and detection levels?

– The precautionary principle should apply to the safety assessment and labelling of all food ingredients produced using nanotechnology or GM

– Labelling all food ingredients produced using nanotechnology or genetic modification (GM) is important for public health, safety and consumer choice

– The United Kingdom’s Royal Society and Royal Academy of Engineering recommended that given the emerging evidence of serious toxicity risks, nano-ingredients should be subject to new safety assessments and face mandatory product labelling

– The European Union’s Food Safety Authority recognises that some nanomaterials can pose serious new health and environmental risks, although there are still many serious knowledge gaps

– The “Scientific American Magazine” recognised in its August 2009 editorial that big GM corporations such as Monsanto, Pioneer and Syngenta have effectively prevented independent scientific assessment of their GM products, meaning that few safety studies have been published and peer-reviewed

– Surveys have shown that accurate food ingredient labelling, including in relation to nanotechnology and GM, is very important to Australians

– GM and nano-ingredient labelling must include all foods, additives and processing aids (including refined oils and sugars), animal products and foods prepared at the point of sale