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“[Proposition 37] an unnecessary, costly and ill-conceived ballot proposition. ... This is a poorly written measure that would mandate that food producers provide misleading and confusing information to consumers. "
— Pamela G. Bailey, president and CEO, GMA
In addition, GMA is working very actively to reduce its members’ impact on the environment, Bailey pointed out. “The GMA-FMI Sustainability Conference in October serves as a forum at which companies can acquire tools, contacts and innovative solutions to help take their own sustainability initiatives to the next level,” she said.
“CPG companies have already achieved dramatic improvements in packaging recycling and recovery, eliminating 1.5 billion pounds of packaging waste since 2005, with another 2.5 billion pounds expected to be eliminated by 2020.
“We’re also working with FMI, the National Restaurant Association and other groups to assess the sources and causes of food waste so we can identify the most effective ways to reduce it.
“In addition, we’re working with consumer-facing groups like Curbside Value Partnership and Recyclebank to better understand consumer behavior about recycling, so we can optimize consumer education and improve access to recycling.
“GMA has also sponsored new research to evaluate the effectiveness of several waste recovery and recycling options, which is scheduled for release this fall; and we’re pursuing policy solutions to remove barriers to increased recycling and recovery rates.”
Bailey said GMA is also working with retailers “on a new vision for harnessing and efficiently using the wealth of consumer insight data; and improving the Rapid Recall Exchange, which streamlines product recalls.”
Read more: GMA, FMI to Co-locate Executive Events
Asked about the implications of the drought on GMA members, Bailey said the association is working to limit the impact on consumers.
“This drought is the most severe the U.S. has experienced in the last 50 years, and it is negatively impacting the yields of many crops, with the most devastating effects on soybeans and corn. While GMA member companies are committed to delivering safe, nutritious food at affordable prices, consumers will feel the effects of these higher input costs at retail.”
To alleviate some of the drought’s impact at the consumer level, Bailey said GMA is working with other groups asking the Environmental Protection Agency to waive a requirement that U.S. refineries must use prescribed amounts of corn every year for ethanol, “which will amount to 4.7 billion bushels this year, or approximately 40% of the crop.