Greenwood Village, Colo. (Nov. 7, 2003) – Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU) expressed great satisfaction with Thursday’s Senate vote in support of mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL).
“The Senate’s vote sends a strong message to the agriculture appropriations conference committee and to the U.S. Agriculture Department to keep COOL and proceed with implementing this beneficial law,” said RMFU President John Stencel.
The House agriculture appropriations bill contains language to prohibit USDA from spending funds to implement mandatory COOL for meat and meat products. The Senate voted 58 to 36 in favor of a “sense of the Senate” amendment instructing agriculture appropriations conferees to remove this House language from the final agriculture spending bill.
“Country-of-origin labeling provides U.S. producers, as well as those from other countries, with a mechanism that allows for product differentiation in the marketplace. This is really no different than the retail product differentiation sought by processors and retailers when they label or brand products as a means to gain acceptance and loyalty and increase their share of the market,” Stencel said.
“We appreciate Senators Tom Daschle (D-S.D.), Michael Enzi (R-Wyo.), Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), Craig Thomas (R-Wyo.) and others for their extraordinary leadership on behalf of the farmers, ranchers and consumers who support COOL.”