Pro-COOL Forces Fight Back

Cindy ZimmermanAudio, Beef, COOL, NFU, Trade

NFUlogo1Members of the National Farmers Union (NFU) have headed to Capitol Hill this week to urge their Congressional representatives to keep COOL and allow the World Trade Organization (WTO) process to conclude without interference.

Sixty Farmers Union members from 27 states are working to meet with a targeted group of legislators in response to the final WTO ruling against Country of Origin Labeling and proposed legislation that would repeal the law.

National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson called the House bill to repeal COOL “premature and reactionary” noting that there remains ample opportunity for the administration, Mexico and Canada to negotiate an acceptable path forward. “As has happened with past disputes, WTO members can work together to find a solution that will work for them,” said Johnson. “In this case, such a solution must involve continuation of a meaningful process step – born, raised and slaughtered – labeling requirement.”

mt-testerSenator Jon Tester (D-MT), a rancher from Montana, joined a group of lawmakers and consumer advocates in denouncing the WTO ruling. “The World Trade Organization ruling undermines the right of American families to know where their food comes from,” said Tester during a press conference Tuesday morning. “This was a horrible ruling.”

Tester, together with Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Peter DeFazio (D-OR) tied the WTO ruling to the current effort in Congress to grant Trade Promotion Authority to move pending trade negotiations forward. “This ruling brings up troubling implications for our international trade agreements,” said DeLauro. “The Administration has claimed that deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) would not force us to change our laws or regulations. (Monday’s) decision is proof that they are wrong.”

Listen to the full press conference here: Tester-DeLauro COOL presser