By more than a 2-to-1 margin, California voters favor an initiative to require food manufacturers and retailers to label fresh produce and processed foods that contain genetically engineered ingredients.
With less than six weeks until election day, Proposition 37 is supported by 61% of registered voters and opposed by 25%, according to a new USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll. An additional 14% were undecided or refused to answer.
The poll showed broad support among voter groups, but the interviews took place before Tuesday's start of a major television advertising blitz by opponents aimed at changing voters' minds on the issue.
So far, the opposition campaign has raised more than $32.5 million, collected mostly from businesses affected by the measure.
The first 30-second television spot complains that passage of the labeling initiative would foster more government bureaucracy and send food prices spiraling. The commercial features Central Valley farmer Ted Sheeley, who grows corn, cotton, tomatoes, pistachios and other crops. He warns that "the people least able to pay are going to be forced to pay more" for food. It calls the...