COOL, or Country of Origin Labeling is a program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture that requires all seafood product to bear a label showing where where it was harvested and whether it is farmed raised or wild caught. Unfortunately, processed seafood is exempt from these labeling requirements and consequently then, only about half of the seafood in our grocery stores has a COOL label. That’s a problem if you’d like to think you’re eating “genuine” Alaska crab.
It’s already a known fact from recent articles in leading fishing industry journals that approximately only 7 percent of King crab sold at American outlets is actually genuine Alaska king crab. To make matters worse, both legal and illegal king crab that is harvested, processed, and shipped to the United States from elsewheres for repackaging isn’t even required to bear the COOL label either as it falls into the processed category. When crab passes through the hands of “countless” middlemen prior to getting to our local shopping markets, can we really be sure of where it comes from? Wouldn’t it make more sense if ALL seafood was required to show the “Country of Origin” label?
There is an opportunity to act, to give our opinion. Think of it as supporting the Bering sea crab fishing industry that we’ve all come to admire…
foodandwaterwatch.com reports…In an effort to assess how effectively the measure (COOL program) has been implemented, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the agency responsible for the development of the COOL program, is seeking public comments. We think they should hear from you!
Let the USDA know how you feel about COOL labeling and make the Jump