Last week, Congress again delayed implementation of the mandatory country-of-origin labeling law. This time they pushed it back to Sept. 30, 2008.


The law requires packers to label meat products with the animal’s birthplace, where it is raised and slaughtered.


The bill was originally set to go into effect in 2004; then a delay pushed it to Sept. 30, 2006. However, producer associations, packers and retailers have pressed for delays or even repeals. They argue that not only is COOL costly, it is a record keeping nightmare.


Lawmakers also agreed to override a court ruling on whether products labeled with USDA’s Organic seal can contain small amounts of non-organic ingredients. An appeals court decided earlier this year that non-organic substances, such as vitamins or baking powder, are not allowed in food bearing the seal.


Pork magazine