Canada Requests WTO Panel on U.S. COOL

Canada has officially requested that a WTO dispute panel be established to review claims against implementation of Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) of some products in the United States. The 2008 Farm Bill mandates COOL at the retail level for beef, lamb, pork, chicken, goat, perishable agricultural commodities, and certain nuts.

The interim rule for implementation was published in August of 2008, Canada and Mexico requested dispute consultations on that rule in December. In January, Canada agreed not to pursue a WTO dispute panel if the final rule contained certain flexibilities regarding meat labeling. USDA published the final rule in January for implementation on March 16th. Canada and Mexico filed a request for consultation on the final rule in May.

U.S. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack and Trade Representative Ron Kirk issued a statement saying,

“We regret that formal consultations have not been successful in resolving Canada’s concerns over country of origin labeling. We believe that our implementation of COOL provides information to consumers in a manner consistent with our World Trade Organization commitments.”

The Canadian request for a dispute panel will be considered by the WTO on October 23rd.


2 responses to this post.

  1. […] dispute panel requests were blocked last Friday. The United States blocked a request by Canada and Mexico requesting that a WTO dispute panel look into U.S. country-of-origin labeling rules. The […]


  2. Posted by Rowena Park on October 31, 2009 at 3:27 am

    I am certainly in favor of COOL. I am a label reader and if I find no COOL I do not buy. Like to know where my food comes from. Thank you R Park


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: