OTTAWA, ONTARIO — The Canadian Pork Council said it is cautiously optimistic about the U.S. mandatory Country of Origin labeling final rule and hopes it will alleviate the market uncertainty allowing the market to stabilize. However, The CPC still opposes the mandatory initiative, considering it as a trade barrier.

"There is an increasing body of market information coming from both the United States and Canada pointing clearly to COOL having seriously disrupted trade in live swine between Canada and the U.S. and we continue to have concerns that market discrimination against imports will persist" said Jurgen Preugchas, CPC president.

Canadian pork producers say they are alarmed that the COOL requirements are destroying a trade relationship that mutually benefits both countries, in particular the U.S. export market for Canadian live swine.

"Publication of the final rule may alleviate some of the market uncertainty that currently disrupts our U.S.-Canada trade relationship" Mr. Preugchas added. "However, we will continue to assess the impact of the COOL on Canadian producers and will need an evaluation period to determine the impact of these changes in the marketplace."

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