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Angus Journal

South Dakota Stockgrowers Thank Senators

Contact: Margaret Nachtigall, 605-342-0429,,

RAPID CITY, S.D. (Jan. 14, 2010) - South Dakota Stockgrowers Association is pleased with work done by South Dakota Senators in support of country-of-origin labeling (COOL), which was included in the 2008 Farm Bill. We thank Senator Johnson, who is an original sponsor of COOL and has championed it from the beginning, and we thank Senator Thune for his ongoing support.

Led by South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson and Wyoming Senator Mike Enzi, 26 senators, including South Dakota Senator John Thune, submitted a letter to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk. The letter made it clear that the United States should be granted the same rights to country-of-origin labeling as 45 other countries that use the country-of-origin labeling on certain foods, including meats.

Both Canada and Mexico, who have country-of-origin labeling laws of their own, have requested a hearing with the World Trade Organization (WTO) Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) charging the United States with unfair trade due to the implementation of COOL.

The letter stated, in part, "We believe that, in a manner consistent with General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) obligations, the COOL program as signed into law in the 2008 Farm Bill is nondiscriminatory in its treatment of imported goods, mandating that both domestic and imported goods covered under the law be labeled with country of origin"

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