House Agriculture Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte and Ranking Member Charlie Stenholm announced introduction of voluntary country-of-origin labeling legislation.

Upon introduction the bill had 13 cosponsors. The “Food Promotion Act of 2004,” will amend the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 to direct the Secretary of Agriculture to establish the voluntary labeling of produce, meat and seafood with country-of-origin information.

The bill is supported by 325 different groups, including many meat industry groups, and will allow producers to work with processors and retailers to provide labeling information in the marketplace in such a way that informs consumers and benefits producers.

“The legislation we are introducing will strike the onerous mandatory system and require the Secretary of Agriculture to establish in its place a rigorous voluntary program,” says Goodlatte. “This will allow producers to work with processors and retailers to provide labeling information to help them market their product.”

Ag Press