April 25, 2018

Senators Ask That COOL Not be Weakened

U.S. Senators have sent a bipartisan letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee, asking that efforts to weaken or suspend Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) be rejected while discussing funding for the government for Fiscal Year 2015. COOL was created in response to consumers asking for information about where the meat and seafood they buy comes from. Implementation of COOL has been challenged in international courts for more than five years.

Meat LabelThe letter states that the Senate shouldn’t undermine the U.S. position on this issue by inserting a legislative rider into an Appropriations bill before the World Trade Organization decision on the matter is final. The ruling isn’t public yet, but other countries are trying to resist COOL implementation because they think it would hurt their economies.

Consumer advocates state that people have a right to know where their food comes from. American livestock producers also support COOl since they can market their products as born and raised in the United States.

COOL was passed in the 2002 and 2008 Farm Bills. The Montana Farmers Union supports COOL along with many farmers, ranchers, and consumers. This summer, some members of Congress called for the repeal of country of origin labeling law if the WTO ruled against the U.S. Canada and Mexico are suing to overturn the law.

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