COOL delay

Implementation of the mandatory country-of-origin labeling program has been delayed for two years. Food retailers and some producer groups won a round when Congress passed an omnibus spending bill in late January that contained the delay as part of the U.S.

Department of Agriculture appropriations.

Agriculture secretary Ann Veneman told Congress she supported the delay because Congress needed more time “to put some refinements” into the law. In a letter to a senator who opposed the delay, Veneman described COOL as “a targeted retail marketing tool, not a food safety to animal health program, and it should be treated as such.”

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