WASHINGTON – Several weeks ago the Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS) received a less-than-favorable report regarding country-of-origin labeling (COOL) from the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the US Department of Agriculture saying, “AMS made significant strides implementing the final rule;” however, “AMS still needs to make improvements to its controls and processes to ensure retailers and suppliers fully comply with the regulations.”

According to OIG, AMS also needs to improve the retailer selection process, strengthen retailer review procedures and improve the timeline of its evaluation of retailer review documentation, relayed the Sept. 16 edition of the National Chicken Council’s Washington Report. Regarding oversight and enforcement, OIG said AMS needs to improve enforcement of COOL regulations, its oversight of state agencies, and communications with retailers.

OIG’s study included detailed recommendations to assist AMS in resolving these issues.