The After Effects of Mandatory COOL

US - With a new farm bill now on the books, USDA soon should be rolling out all of the important info on mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL) so that producers can begin preparing for the implementation data. While important, deadlines and details probably aren't what most producers are really curious to know, however.
calendar icon 2 June 2008
clock icon 1 minute read

According to Troy Marshall of Beef nagazine The most obvious question is: “Will mandatory COOL decrease the importation of beef from foreign countries?” That’s primarily feeder cattle from Mexico and fed cattle from Canada.

Certainly, in the short term, he writes, as nobody wants to be holding inventory if that inventory might be devalued, but I’ve had trouble with the cause and effect for quite some time.

For one thing, a very small percentage of the retail case consists of imported beef, the segment to which mandatory COOL applies. And with about 50% of our product moving through non-retail marketing channels, if there was a consumer preference for the “made in the USA” label, the non-USA product would likely be just shifted through the Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional (HRI) trade, which is exempt from the law.

The cost and benefits to the industry of the law’s implementation have been hotly disputed, and at least we’ll finally get a handle on those numbers.

  • View the Beef Magazine story by clicking here.
  • TheCattleSite News Desk

    © 2000 - 2023 - Global Ag Media. All Rights Reserved | No part of this site may be reproduced without permission.