In this file:
· Ranchers, Farmers Lose COOL in New Trade Deal
· R CALF CEO To Talk About Labeling And Marketing Issues At Healthy Farms Conference
Ranchers, Farmers Lose COOL in New Trade Deal
Eric Tegethoff, Public News Service - ND
January 9, 2020
PETTIBONE, N.D. -- As Congress nears approval of a deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement, some farmers and ranchers are disappointed in the lack of country-of-origin labeling, or COOL, in the bill.
Supporters say a loophole allows foreign importers to put "Product of the U.S." on their beef, even if it is minimally processed in the country, hurting domestic cattle ranchers.
Shelly Ziesch, a cattle ranch owner in Pettibone, N.D., says under the current law, packers can do something as simple as adding salt or grinding the beef within the United States to qualify as a U.S. product.
"It's something we've been fighting for -- the 'Product of the U.S.' label -- and now they're kind of making a mockery of it because they can put whatever they want in it, and we believe that 'Product of the U.S.' should be only products that are born, raised and harvested in the United States," she states.
Opponents of such labeling say it's too costly for packers.
The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement is expected to pass Congress as early as this week.
Organizations, including the North Dakota Farmers Union and United States Cattlemen's Association say not including COOL in the agreement is a missed opportunity.
R CALF CEO To Talk About Labeling And Marketing Issues At Healthy Farms Conference
Radio 570 WNAX (SD)
Jan 9, 2020
The Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society’s Healthy Farms Conference is set for January 31 and February 1 in Grand Island. Co-keynote speaker is Bill Bullard, CEO of R-CALF. He’ll detail efforts to restore mandatory country of origin labeling which many of the Society’s members are interested in.
He says he’ll discuss efforts to fix the current cattle markets.
Bullard will also address the current anti-trust litigation R-CALF is involved in charging the four large meatpackers with market manipulation.
more, including audio [1:21 min.]