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trade barriers

WTO Authorizes $1 Billion in Retaliatory Tariffs Against COOL

The World Trade Organization (WTO) has authorized Canada and Mexico to charge the U.S. $1 billion in retaliatory tariffs for country-of-origin labeling (COOL) on meat. Last spring, WTO rejected a U.S. appeal of its decision that COOL unfairly discriminates against meat imports and gives the advantage to domestic meat products. COOL, which went into effect for meat… Continue Reading

USTR Tells WTO That COOL Damages Are Much Lower Than Estimated

Last week, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) filed a legal brief in the World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute over mandatory country-of-origin labeling (COOL), arguing that the $3 billion sought by Canada and Mexico in retaliatory tariffs are a dramatic overestimation of damages. The U.S. requested that the WTO Arbitrator reject the amounts requested by… Continue Reading

Senators Introduce Bill for Voluntary COOL Label

Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and John Hoeven (R-ND) introduced a bill Thursday that would remove certain meats from the mandatory country-of-origin (COOL) labeling program and institute a voluntary label instead. In May, the World Trade Organization rejected a U.S. appeal of its decision that COOL on meat unfairly discriminates against meat imports and give the… Continue Reading

Senate Agriculture Committee Mulls Options on COOL

The Senate Agriculture Committee held a hearing Thursday to discuss country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for meat, which requires that packages sold in the U.S. indicate the country, or countries, where animals were born, raised and slaughtered. “It doesn’t matter if you’re pro-COOL (and many are) or anti-COOL (and many are), you cannot ignore the fact that retaliation… Continue Reading

House Votes to Repeal Country-of-Origin Labeling for Meat

The House of Representatives has voted to repeal country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for beef, pork, and chicken. Texas Republican Rep. Michael Conaway’s Country of Origin Labeling Amendments Act of 2015 passed late Wednesday night by a 300-131 vote. Conaway introduced the bill on May 18 — the same day the World Trade Organization rejected a U.S. appeal of its… Continue Reading

WTO Rules Against Mandatory COOL for Meat

The Appellate Body of the World Trade Organization on Friday ruled that U.S. country-of-origin labeling laws (COOL) discriminated against meat importers such as Canada and Mexico, but that U.S. consumers also have the right to know information on their food’s origin. The ruling will require the U.S. to amend its labeling laws to not be… Continue Reading

Vilsack: Trade Barriers Against U.S. Food on the Rise

The number of food safety and plant health trade barriers plaguing U.S. agricultural exports is way up, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack told a congressional committee recently. “In the last 10 years, the number of sanitary and phytosanitary barriers we have had to deal with has increased from roughly 650 to close to 1,500 last year,”… Continue Reading