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House Agriculture Committee Votes to Repeal COOL

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

(North American Meat Institute)

The House Committee on Agriculture last Wednesday voted to repeal the mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) requirements for beef, pork and chicken, while leaving intact the requirements for all other covered commodities. The bipartisan bill (H.R. 2393), which amends the Agriculture Marketing Act of 1946, passed the Committee by a vote of 38 to 6. A total of 68 Democrats and Republicans joined House Agriculture Committee Chairman Michael Conaway (R-TX) in co-sponsoring the legislation. The vote followed the World Trade Organization's (WTO) ruling that found the rule is not compliant with international trade obligations.

The WTO ruling permits Mexico and Canada to seek authorization to take retaliatory measures against U.S. exports. The repeal aims to avoid this economic retaliation, which would detrimentally impact U.S. producers, processors and manufacturers.

In a statement, Agriculture Committee Chairman Michael Conaway (R-TX) said that the bill "is a targeted response that will remove uncertainty and restore stability for the United States by bringing us back into compliance."

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