The U.S. Department of Agriculture plans to offer up a second proposal for national organic standards by the end of this year. The first draft of proposed standards, unveiled in late 1997, elicited a record 300,000 public comments, most of them critical of the proposed rules, which, among other things, would have allowed some genetically modified foods to be labeled organic. Meanwhile, the organic industry has decided to develop its own rules, fearing that the federal process could drag on indefinitely.