Status (4/13/21): A win! PBFA called on Virginia Governor Northam to veto GB 199. Northam vetoed it in a major win for plant-based foods. 

A statement from Plant Based Foods Association (PBFA)’s Executive Director, Michele Simon:

PBFA calls on Virginia Governor Northam to put consumers first and reject HB 119, which unfairly and unconstitutionally limits the ability of plant-based food companies to truthfully and accurately label their foods.

HB 119 is an unwarranted attack on plant-based foods and their free-market and free-speech rights to use common and usual terms that consumers understand. Not allowing the word “milk” on plant-based milk alternatives will do nothing to help struggling dairy farmers. Lawmakers and lobbyists should turn their attention to more constructive solutions instead of attacking others in the market.

We believe that Governor Northman has made efforts to promote innovation and a friendly business climate in Virginia; HB 119 goes in the wrong direction and instead makes Virginia unfriendly to plant-based food consumers and businesses. We ask that the Governor make it clear that Virginia is open for business, remains a hub for innovation, and respects the First Amendment rights of businesses to clearly, accurately, and truthfully label their foods. 

The Plant Based Foods Association will continue to work towards maintaining a level playing field for its member companies and consumers across the nation that are entitled to the benefits of plant-based food companies’ innovative American spirit and the delicious new plant-based offerings in the marketplace.

To read PBFA’s letter to Governor Northam, click here.