The World Trade Organization (WTO) has ruled against the United States in its disputes with North American neighbors Canada and Mexico concerning country of origin labeling (COOL), according to reports.
COOL, which went into effect in the U.S. in November 2013, requires that labels of pork, beef and other meat products provide more information about where the meat originated. The USDA issued the current version of COOL after WTO in 2012 ruled that an earlier version was discriminatory. However, Mexico and Canada were still not satisfied with the updated version of COOL. The two countries took their case back to WTO.
Mexico and Canada argued that the rule hurts their ability to compete.
An official report on the WTO's most recent findings has been sent to the governments of the three countries, but is not expected to be made public until late September or October. However, sources familiar with the WTO report told the Wall Street Journal that the U.S. did not prevail.
"We do for a fact know that the ruling, when it is made public, will be in favor of Canada and Mexico," one source said. Another source made a similar statement.
According to WTO rules, the United States will have 60 days to appeal from the time the report is made public.