U.S. News

Some Coca-Cola products to be temporarily unavailable in Vermont stores

Empty Coca-Cola cases are seen at a food stall on the street in Caracas, Venezuela May 24, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

(Reuters) - Coca-Cola Co’s said some products would be temporarily unavailable in Vermont stores as the world’s largest beverage maker gears up for a GMO-labeling law going into effect on July 1.

Vermont was the first U.S. state to pass a law requiring food companies to label genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on their products.

“Products containing GMO ingredients will have the required language printed on the label or, in some cases, on stickers,” Coca-Cola spokesman Ben Sheidler said in an e-mailed statement.

“To avoid multiple labeling changes, some lower-volume brands and packages we offer within our broad portfolio could be temporarily unavailable in Vermont,” Sheidler said.

Many of the company’s popular beverages like Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Coke Zero will continue to be widely available in Vermont stores, he said.

The U.S. food industry has spent millions of dollars fighting mandatory GMO labeling efforts on state and federal levels, as consumers demand increasing transparency on what exactly is in their food.

However, the U.S. Senate blocked a bill that would nullify state and local efforts requiring food companies to label products made with GMOs.

Packaged foods companies like Kellogg Co, Campbell Soup Co and Cheerios maker General Mills have said that they would begin labeling their products for GMOs in accordance to the Vermont law.

Reporting by Subrat Patnaik in Bengaluru; Editing by Cynthia Osterman