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Pork Producers Express Concern Over Planned Introduction of U.S. Voluntary Country of Origin Labelling
Stephen Heckbert - Canadian Pork Council

Farmscape for March 15, 2024

The Executive Director of the Canadian Pork Council says U.S. Voluntary Country of Origin Labelling is the solution to a problem that doesn't exist and will create problems of its own.
On Monday U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced voluntary country of original labelling, or V-COOL, will come into effect by January 1, 2026.
The rule allows the voluntary use of "Product of USA" or “Made in the USA” label claims on meat, poultry and egg products only when they are derived from animals born, raised, slaughtered and processed in the United States.
Canadian Pork Council Executive Director Stephen Heckbert says the change will disrupt trade patterns that have developed over decades.

Quote-Stephen Heckbert-Canadian Pork Council:
The born, raised, processed, et cetera, et cetera is much more prescriptive and much more limiting in terms of the cross-border trade we've developed between our two countries.
You may know we ship a fair amount of weanlings to the U.S., they ship pork to us and we have a quite a good relationship across the border.
We actually think it's an example that other industries should probably follow in terms of how cooperative we are, how much we work together so, from our perspective, this just doesn't make sense.
Let me reiterate, no one's asked for this.
This is a problem that has been created entirely by government and no one asked them to step in.
Certainly no one in the pork industry.
It is a solution that has created a whole bunch of new problems and our hope is that eventually common sense prevails and people understand it's consumers who are going to pay more.
Budgets are tight, times are tough and any government that says they're really concerned about costs to consumers should be doing everything it can to reduce costs to consumers, not increase them.
From our perspective what we'd really love to see, and speaking selfishly, the pork industry would like to have the U.S. Agriculture Secretary walk away from our industry on this file and say it applies to everybody except pork because they said they don't need it so we're good.

Heckbert says we have an integrated Canada U.S. market and regulations that reflect that will be serve consumers much better than anything being proposed here.
For more visit Farmscape.Ca.
Bruce Cochrane.

       *Farmscape is produced on behalf of North America’s pork producers

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