Bill Brings Country-of-Origin Labeling Back to Table in Montana Senate

A hamburger labeled with "Product of USA" in a grocery store.
( Wyatt Bechtel )

A new bill for country-of-origin-labeling on beef and pork products at retail stores in Montana, Senate Bill 206, was introduced on Monday in the Montana legislature. 

Retailers would be required to display a placard at meat counters designating meat that falls within these three categories: 1) meat that is born, raised and processed in the USA, 2) meat that is processed outside of the USA, and 3) meat that is only processed in the USA.

The current federal COOL law allows beef and pork imported from other countries to be labeled as “Product of USA” as long as the meat is processed or packed in the U.S.

Placarding at the retail level, as required by SB 206, is designed to improve transparency for consumers while increasing market share for U.S. beef and pork producers. Currently, domestic ranchers must compete against foreign producers without a reliable way to distinguish their products from those produced in Brazil or Mexico, AgWeek reports.

If passed, the law would require no cost or investment from ranchers.

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