NFU, the US Cattlemen’s Association (NCBA), Consumer Federation of America (CFA), and American Sheep Industry Association sent a letter on Friday, 27 September urging USDA to reject an extension to the implementation of Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL).
“Farmers, ranchers and consumers have waited too long for meaningful Country-of-Origin Labeling standards and we strongly urge USDA to enforce those regulations which have been carefully scrutinized and revised and that will bring the United States into compliance with its WTO obligations”. “The revised regulations published by USDA will provide consumers with enhanced information that will reduce the confusion about the food they buy.” “We believe the rule complies with the World Trade Organization (WTO) ruling and is consistent with US law. We strongly support it and your efforts to defend it”, they say in the letter.
This letter is the reaction from the related associations to the recent letter to USDA and USTR from packer-producer organizations and foreign interests seeking to postpone the enforcement of the updated COOL regulations. The six-month grace period for companies to come into compliance with the rules has not ended yet.