Farm Bill Conferees Urged to Leave COOL Alone
National Farmers Union, the U.S. Cattlemen's Association, American Sheep Industry Association and Consumer Federation of America are asking members of the farm bill conference committee to oppose any legislative changes to the country of origin labeling law. NFU President Roger Johnson says packer-producer organizations and their foreign counterparts that don't have the interest of U.S. family farmers and ranchers in mind are calling for legislative interference on COOL. But based on recent World Trade Organization rulings - Johnson says there's no reason for Congress to take action. According to the letter to farm bill conferees - the agribusiness and packer-producer groups are merely trying to scare members of Congress into changing the law to benefit their bottom lines. The groups says they strongly oppose such action - noting that COOL is a top priority for their organizations. They say any effort to change COOL in the farm bill would affect their support of the legislation.