USDA administrator to share information on COOL at Husker Harvest Days
LINCOLN, NE – A United States Department of Agriculture official involved with implementing Country Of Origin Labeling (COOL) will be available at Husker Harvest Days in Grand Island, NE to answer questions about the program.
Nebraska Agriculture Director Greg Ibach said that USDA Agricultural Marketing Service Administrator Lloyd Day will provide remarks about COOL and be available to visit with farmers and ranchers during a public forum on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2008, at the University of Nebraska’s Market Journal Tent on the Husker Harvest Days grounds. The event will begin at 2:45 p.m. The Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA), University of Nebraska Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources (IANR) and Nebraska Cattlemen are jointly sponsoring Day’s visit to the state.
“COOL takes effect in September for meat products, and the rules governing that program were just recently released,” Ibach said. “Many farmers, ranchers, and agribusiness owners still have questions about how this program will affect their operations. This event will provide a forum for getting answers to those questions.”
In addition to the event at the Market Journal Tent, Nebraska Cattlemen have arranged for Day to make appearances and provide brief comments at the Livestock Handling Demonstration Tent at 10:45 a.m. and at 2:00 p.m. He also will be touring the Husker Harvest Day grounds throughout the day.
Individuals who do not get the opportunity to see Day at Husker Harvest Days can still benefit from the information he will share. Darrell Mark, Extension Livestock Market Specialist for IANR, said UNL Extension will be providing several educational materials, including video interviews with Day, on Extension’s COOL web site. Livestock producers and others interested in obtaining fact sheets and viewing streaming video presentations on how to meet the COOL regulations can visit http://agecon.unl.edu/mark/country_of_origin.html after Day’s visit to Nebraska.
Ibach said Day’s visit is important, given the impact of livestock and meat production on Nebraska’s economy.
“COOL will affect all segments of our state’s meat production industry, from farmers and ranchers to livestock auction markets and processors,” Ibach said. “I encourage all those who will be impacted to educate themselves about the program and find a way to make it beneficial to their operation.”