U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack declared on Friday afternoon that “effective immediately” the U.S. Department of Agriculture would not be enforcing country of origin labeling rules for beef and pork. It’s been over seven years since American packers were forced to segregate Canadian animals and meat. How quickly can they go back to operating how they… Read More

After 13-plus years of opposition — the last seven of those in legal and trade disputes, Canadian livestock producers and their organizations are celebrating the end of U.S. country of origin labeling legislation for beef and pork today. Both the U.S. House and Senate voted in favour of the omnibus appropriations bill that includes text… Read More

Update Dec 18, 2015: Both the U.S. House and Senate voted in favour of the legislation, including the text to repeal COOL, on Friday. The bill now heads to the White House for President Obama’s approval. With retaliation from Canada and Mexico looming, the U.S. government took a step late Tuesday toward repealing its mandatory country… Read More

From the reported merger talks between two giants in the ag input industry to limited talks about the proposed farm labour legislation in Alberta, here’s this week’s TWORA podcast, featuring perspectives from John Masswohl, Ian Brodie, Brian Voth, Derek Jamieson and Richard Phillips: Subscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android |… Read More

The World Trade Organization has given Canada and Mexico the go-ahead to retaliate against the U.S. for the discrimination caused by American country of origin meat labeling rules. The arbitrators’ decision issued Monday gave Canada permission to implement retaliatory tariffs worth up to C$1.055 billion per year. While the approved figure is less than the C$3.1 billion… Read More

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has issued his marching orders for his new cabinet. As part of his commitment to “open and transparent” government, the ministerial mandate letters are being shared publicly for the first time. All 30 letters were posted on the Prime Minister’s Office website on Friday, including a letter to Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of… Read More

International Trade Minister Ed Fast was in Regina last week to meet with agricultural equipment exporters and farmers during Canada’s Farm Progress Show. The minister hosted an invitation-only roundtable with 25 companies on Friday morning. Following the meeting, he toured some of the show’s exhibits. “Canada is a relatively small market. Our market is the world. The… Read More

The Canadian government has taken another step toward following through on its two-year-old threat to retaliate against U.S. country of origin labeling (COOL) unless the meat labeling rules are repealed. Canada’s trade and agriculture ministers — Ed Fast and Gerry Ritz — joined Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal, Mexico’s Secretary of Economy, and Enrique Martínez y Martínez, Mexico’s Secretary of… Read More

Canada’s fight against U.S. country of origin labeling rules for meat highlights an inconsistency in the Canadian position on the treatment of foreign agricultural products, say two organizations representing American wheat growers and industry. U.S. Wheat Associates and the National Association of Wheat Growers sent a letter to Canadian Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and International Trade… Read More

When Canada’s agriculture and trade ministers — as everybody expected following the World Trade Organization’s latest ruling against U.S. country of origin labeling — promised to retaliate unless the labeling rules are repealed, virtually all Canadian livestock producer groups and provincial governments who benefit from cross-border cattle and hog trade applauded the federal government’s swift action. With one… Read More

Update on May 20th: The U.S. House Agriculture Committee, as expected, approved Chair Michael Conoway’s bill to repeal COOL on Wednesday morning by a vote of 38-6. It’s expected the entire House will vote on it in early June. The final ruling from the World Trade Organization against U.S. mandatory country of origin labeling and the threat… Read More

The World Trade Organization has once again sided with Canada and Mexico, as the WTO Appellate Body published a fourth and final ruling on U.S. country of origin labeling rules today. The appeal panel decision affirmed earlier rulings saying COOL illegally discriminates against foreign livestock (read the report and findings here). “The United States has used and… Read More