USDA strengthens enforcement of Livestock Mandatory Reporting, COOL

Action extends current rules of practice under Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) issued a final rule Aug. 8 allowing USDA to take action as needed, including levying civil penalties, against violators of the Livestock Mandatory Reporting (LMR) and the country-of-origin labeling (COOL) regulations. The action extends the current rules of practice under the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946, as amended, to include LMR and COOL violations.

The rules of practice for LMR and COOL set a clear and efficient process for all stakeholders regarding any enforcement actions and facilitate the agency’s work to ensure timely compliance.

“When someone fails to meet the LMR reporting requirements, it impacts the ability of AMS to publish timely and reliable livestock information that the industry relies upon,” USDA said.

The COOL program ensures that consumers have information regarding the origin of many foods available in the marketplace, USDA added.

Enforcement provisions in the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 allow up to $10,000 in fines per infraction for violating the LMR regulations. Additionally, the act allows fines for a retailer or person engaged in the business of supplying a covered commodity that willfully violates COOL regulations.

A notice on the rule will be published in the Aug. 9, 2017, Federal Register.

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