USDA Has Issued New Proposed Rule for Country of Origin Labeling

USDA has issued a new proposed rule for Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) – and it’s good! As background: COOL was mandated in the 2008 Farm Bill thanks to the work of a coalition of organizations representing farmers and consumers. But the rules implementing COOL for meat were poorly written and allowed meat packers to label cuts as “product of the USA, Mexico and/or Canada,” for example. Cuts from different countries could be commingled, and the result was that consumers still had no idea where their meat was coming from. The World Trade Organization found that the rules violated international trade requirements.

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