Sec. Vilsack says COOL decision expected by June

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack expects to find out in June how the World Trade Organization (WTO) will rule on USDA's final country-of-origin meat labeling (COOL) requirements. The formal notice would likely come in July, he told the Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee today. While Vilsack was not specific on the dates, trade source previously indicated a WTO panel is expected to a deliver a confidential interim report in the case to the Canadian and Mexican governments June 20, with a final report due July 22. Vilsack said there is no fallback plan if the WTO decides that new regulations imposed last year violate international rules. USDA implemented the new regulations after an earlier WTO ruling.


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