U.S. House Votes To Repeal Country Origin Labels for Meat

WASHINGTON - The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday voted to repeal a law requiring country-of-origin labels on beef and pork sold in American grocery stores, turning aside objections from consumer and farm groups, Reuters reports.

The House sided with grocers and meat packers who said adding the information to all red meat labels after Sept. 30, 2004 would not only be too complicated and costly, but would also raise food prices for consumers.

The repeal, which would not affect labels required next year for produce, seafood and peanuts, reportedly will face stiff opposition in the Senate, which initiated the original labeling law. A Senate committee was scheduled to draft its version of the annual agriculture appropriations bill on Tuesday.

The COOL mandate was passed last year as part of a broad farm subsidy law. Supporters of the meat labels said the information is important to consumers and to family farmers.
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