Minnesota Democrats reject amendment to ‘require informing people if they’re eating bugs’

8:47 09.06.2024 •

Democrats in the Minnesota Senate voted down an amendment that would have required foods containing bugs or “cell-cultured” products to be labeled as such.

The omnibus agriculture policy bill, also known as S.F. 4225, was discussed, amended, and passed by the Minnesota Senate. According to the bill’s author, Sen. Aric Putnam, D-St. Cloud, the “overwhelming majority” of the bill related to policy recommendations from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.

Before the bill was passed, Sen. Torrey Westrom, R-Alexandria, put forward an amendment that would require food to be properly labeled if it contains either insect products or artificial “cell-cultured” food such as lab-grown meat.

Speaking to his amendment, Westrom said “this just sets forth that if there’s bugs in your food for protein, cricket flour, whatever it is, it needs to be labeled. The consumers need to know. If your meat is cell-cultured and grown in a petri dish, you also need to know. Consumers should have that knowledge as they shop in the stores.”

While Putnam agreed that “consumers should know what they are consuming,” the St. Cloud legislator opposed Westrom’s amendment. In opposing the amendment, Putnam described the issue as a “future problem” and said legislators need to know what fiscal impact the labeling requirement will have before approving it.

“Everybody wants to have consumer awareness of the food that they eat, but some of us want to do it in a thoughtful way,” he said.


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