to USDA on Country of Origin Labeling Rule
February 28, 2004
Murkowski, who has long supported COOL as helpful to consumers as well as America's food producers, expressed the state's support for the regulation, but added a number of recommendations to make the rule better.
"Today, there is often a premium paid in the market for Alaska seafood products," Murkowski said. "The state believes this trend will increase, but only if truthful information reaches the consumers. Consumers, particularly in Europe and most recently Japan, want to know where their food comes from, who made it, what is in it, and what safety conditions apply to that production. COOL supports this growing trend and puts US producers on a competitive track."
Among modifications to the proposed rule that Murkowski recommended are:
"US consumers do want to know where their food comes from," Murkowski said. "When determining the actual value of the COOL regulations, the state asks that USDA consider the importance of consumer education, our small US-based producers and their inability to mount expensive lobbying campaigns, the importance of progressive regulations, and discouraging fraudulent information in our marketplace.
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