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CCA Confident US COOL Will Remain Voluntary

by 5m Editor
2 December 2003, at 12:00am

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 1396. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.

Manitoba Pork Council


Farm-Scape is sponsored by
Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork

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Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council
and Sask Pork.

Farm-Scape, Episode 1396

The President of the Canadian Cattlemen's Association is confident US will ultimately abandon its efforts to make Country of Origin Labelling legislation mandatory.

A joint Senate-House conference committee has recommended delaying the introduction of mandatory Country of Origin legislation for most products until 2006.

CCA President Neil Jahnke says US groups that had been opposed to mandatory COOL are firming up their positions and many that had supported the provision are reconsidering that support.

"Since the USDA released their findings on the cost of mandatory Country of Origin Labelling, which amounts to something like three billion dollars a year, there has been some pushback from industry.

A lot of the industry down there, and NCBA in particular, supported a voluntary country of origin not mandatory and, with a three billion dollar price tag, we're seeing more pushback on mandatory.

I personally believe that, when the dust all settles, that they will stick with voluntary country of origin.

There is the added bit on there that poultry is not included in mandatory.

If it's going to cost the beef and the pork industry three billion dollars a year and their major competitor is exempt, we believe that there will be a big push back and hopefully mandatory Country of Origin Labelling will not become a reality."

Jahnke says voluntary Country of Origin Labelling will serve the same purpose without disrupting the market.

He says CCA has no reservations with a voluntary system, be it in Canada, Japan, the US or any other country but mandatory will mean additional costs.

He doubts the consumer will want to pay more or that producers will want to take less for products to cover those costs.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

5m Editor