- 93% of Americans want to know where their food comes from, and
- 75% of Americans indicate the source of origin of their food is a major attribute when making their food choices.
You can help by submitting comments to the USDA by August 17, 2018.
You have two options for comment submittal:
BY REGULAR MAIL (be sure your comments arrive by August 17):
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-3700
Attention: Ms. Mary Porretta, Petitions Manager
Office of Policy and Program Development
Reference: Petition “18-05”
Here are some questions that can help you get started:
If you’re a consumer:
- Is it important to you to buy from U.S. farmers and ranchers?
- Do you look for a “product of the U.S.A. label” and assume it means that the animal was raised in this country?
- Are you willing to pay more for domestically raised products, if you have confidence in the labeling?
If you’re a producer:
- Have you struggled with the competition from cheaper imports? Have you had consumers bring up the price difference between your product and supposedly comparable products at the grocery stores (most of which are imported)?
- Have you had to explain to customers that the meat labeled “Product of the U.S.A.” may come from another country?
Consider the irony: Australia is a leading beef exporter into the U.S. and has just implemented a mandatory retail Country of Origin Labeling requirement. That means Australian producers can get a premium in their own country from consumers who want to buy local and ALSO get a premium in this country from consumers who THINK they are buying from U.S. producers!