Colorado COOL measure rejected
By Tom Johnston on 2/1/2018
Colorado legislators this week rejected a bill proposing the “Product of the USA” label be reserved in the state’s grocery stores only for beef derived exclusively from animals born, raised and slaughtered in the United States.
The Colorado General Assembly’s House Committee on Agriculture, Livestock and Natural Resources heard testimony from cattle ranchers and consumers stating that multinational meatpackers and retailers were deceptively applying “Product of the USA” labels on foreign beef sold in Colorado grocery stores, according to a news release by R-CALF.
The committee voted 10 to 3 to prevent the measure from being debated on the Assembly’s floor by the state’s 65-member House of Representatives. This, R-CALF noted, occurred despite that testimony being uncontested and without public committee debate.
The bill, HB18-1043, was introduced by Colorado Rep. Kimmi Lewis (R). Lewis was quoted as saying, “All I’m asking is that you take this bill to the floor” because Colorado consumers have the right to know where their beef is produced. “Consumers are looking at “Product of USA’ and it’s a scam.”
Committee members who joined with Lewis to bring HB18-1043 to the floor for debate were Representatives Perry Buck (R) and Lori Saine (R).
Committee members who voted to defeat the measure included Committee Chair Jeni James Arndt (D) and Representatives Jessie Danielson (D), Chris Hanson (D), Dominique Jackson (D), Donald Valdez (D), Daneya Esgar (D), Dylan Roberts (D), Hugh McKean (R), Jon Becker (R) and Marc Catlin (R).