Senator Chuck Grassley has asked the Obama administration to appeal a World Trade Organization panel decision that, while validating the U.S.’s authority to have Country of Origin Labeling for meat products, strikes down the Country of Origin Labeling regulations which implement the law. Grassley joined 18 senators to send a letter to Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk. “Family farmers take pride in the fact that the crops they harvest make it to dinner tables around the world. People want to know where the food on their tables comes from, and makes Country of Origin Labeling a no-brainer,” Grassley said. “Nearly all products sold in the United States show where the product was made.
In fact, other countries label where their meat originated. It’s completely legitimate for us to show if the meat we buy originated in the United States.” From here, the panel decision will either be adopted by the WTO Dispute Settlement Body or the decision can be appealed to the WTO Appellate Body. Grassley joined senators Tim Johnson of South Dakota, Mike Enzi and John Barrasso of Wyoming, Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Jon Tester of Montana, Carl Levin of Michigan, Dianne Feinstein of California, Tom Udall of New Mexico, Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Kent Conrad and John Hoeven of North Dakota, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Michael Bennet of Colorado, Tom Harkin of Iowa, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, and John Thune of South Dakota in signing the letter.