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Business Groups Urge Congress to Act Now on COOL Legislation

Posted November 01, 2014

A coalition of more than a hundred businesses and trade associations petitioned the U.S. Congress on Thursday to legislatively rescind parts of the mandatory country of origin labeling (COOL) law that a World Trade Organization (WTO) compliance panel recently determined violates global trade rules.
COOL Reform
“Given the negative impact on the U.S. manufacturing and agriculture economy, we respectfully submit that it would be intolerable for the United States to maintain, even briefly, a rule that has been deemed noncompliant by the WTO,” said a letter signed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, American Beverage Association, National Pork Producers Council and such large U.S. companies as Anheuser-Busch, The Coca-Cola Company, Cargill, General Mills and Hormel Foods.

“With little potential for quick congressional action after a WTO final adjudication, we request that Congress immediately authorize and direct the secretary of Agriculture to rescind elements of COOL that have been determined to be noncompliant with international trade obligations by a final WTO adjudication,” the letter states.

The groups also invited lawmakers to review a state-by-state analysis estimating the potential economic impact of retaliatory tariffs targeting a broad spectrum of commodities and manufactured products that have been threatened by Canada and Mexico.