Canada, Mexico 'victory' in US meat label dispute

18th November 2011, Comments 0 comments

Canada and Mexico on Friday largely won a trade dispute against the United States over its regulation requiring country-of-origin labels for meat.

The countries claimed the US policy discriminated against their cattle, lowered prices and restricted trade in the case brought before the World Trade Organization.

A dispute panel ruled on Friday that the labelling measure violated a trade agreement by according "less favourable treatment" to imported cattle and hogs.

The WTO also found the policy did not fulfil its objective of providing consumers with information on origin.

The US said the ruling had affirmed its right to require country of origin labeling for meat however.

"Although the panel disagreed with the specifics of how the United States designed those requirements, we remain committed to providing consumers with accurate and relevant information with respect to the origin of meat products that they buy at the retail level," said Andrea Mead, press secretary for the Office of the US Trade Representative.

"In that regard we are considering all options, including appealing the panel's decision."

© 2011 AFP

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