What’s the history of the Country of Origin labeling?

Over the years, efforts by U.S. agriculture to define Country of Origin requirements have varied, but how did we get here?

The concept is nearly a century old, having started with domestic meat products in the Tariff Act of 1930. It was not until the 2002 Farm Bill that retailers were required to have some form of origin labeling for a more wide array of products, like tree nuts and lamb.

In 2016, labeling became more relaxed after Canada and Mexico challenged the rules. The mandatory requirement was then dropped for pork and beef labels. Consumer confusion led to the most recent proposed changes which call for all aspects of the animal to be U.S. related, which means born, raised, slaughtered, and processed.