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U.S. Judge Rules Against Preliminary COOL Injunction

By Amanda Brodhagen,

A U.S. district court judge will not be granting a petition for a preliminary injunction to halt the implementation of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s controversial mandatory country-of-origin meat labeling rule, also known as COOL.

Plaintiffs which included Canadian, U.S. and Mexican meat industry groups made their oral arguments Aug. 27, making the case that the rule violates their First Amendment rights and breaks the Administrative Procedures Act.

The court document said, “the Court has no trouble concluding that experience and common sense dictates that there was a likelihood of consumer confusion under the prior COOL program”.

While the Plaintiffs were disappointed with the judge’s ruling, proponents of the rule including the NFU welcomed the decision, noting that regulation addresses the possibility of consumer confusion over meat labeling.

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