Wisdom of United States COOL Law Now Seen Clearly
By Eric F. Nelson
With the announcement late last week of the recent BSE case in Canada, cattlemen across the United States and consumers around the world watched keenly in the hours after the announcement to see what affect this would have on U.S. live cattle markets and the price of U.S. beef worldwide. To those of us who have all along been proponents of Country of Origin Labeling (85+% of all consumers say they want COOL), we weren’t surprised when nothing happened. That’s correct, the live cattle market actually was stronger hours after the announcement that Canada continues to struggle with BSE in their cattle herd.
Without the Country of Origin law here in the U.S, thorough segregation and tracking of beef throughout the processing, wholesale and retail channels would not have been happening. Without COOL, markets likely would have been upside down, values of cattle and beef inventory would have been left for foreign countries around the world to determine or worse maybe they would have no longer wanted our beef.
As it’s turned out, the law did what was intended: preserve the integrity of United States raised cattle and beef and keep it the premium product that it is on the world market and continue to provide consumers with the world’s best and safest beef.
The meat industry and its allies tried over and over to kill Country of Origin Labeling before it could be enacted, but thankfully many cattlemen had the wisdom to see what COOL would mean for the future of the United States cattle industry and fought diligently to get it in place.
Eric F. Nelson is a cattle producer from Moville, Iowa