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Country of origin labeling (COOL) requires labeling for muscle cuts and ground beef, veal, lamb, pork, goat, chicken, farm-raised and wild fish, shellfish, fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables, peanuts, pecans, macadamia nuts and ginseng that states the country of origin. This mandatory measure was implemented March 16, 2009, by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service. In the case of imported products, the food label indicates where it started, was grown/raised and processed. For example, a meat label for pork might read, “From hogs born in Canada, raised and slaughtered in the United States.”.

There are exemptions to the rule. Food operations such as restaurants, cafeterias, food stands, butcher shops and fish markets do not have to label their foods. Grocery stores that sell less than $230,000 a year also do not need to provide this labeling.

WTO also said COOL is not compliant with the U.S.-WTO agreement on technical barriers to trade and provides "less favorable treatment to imported Canadian cattle and hogs." So there may be a further modification in the future.

Source Publication:
Agricultural Marketing Resource Centre (AgMRC), n.d, Country of Origin Labelling. website. Available at: see website.


Statistical Theme: Agriculture and fisheries statistics

Created on Monday, July 11, 2005

Last updated on Wednesday, April 17, 2013