Country of Origin Labeling

Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) is a federal consumer labeling law that requires most grocery stores and supermarkets to identify the country of origin on certain foods referred to as “covered commodities.” This program is administered by the United States Department of Food and Agriculture, Agricultural Marketing Service (USDA/AMS). These retailers are required to notify their customers of the country of origin of muscle cuts and ground lamb, chicken, goat, wild and farm-raised fish and shellfish, perishable agricultural commodities, peanuts, pecans, ginseng, and macadamia nuts. Fish markets, butcher shops, restaurants and other food service establishments (e.g., cafeterias, lunchrooms, institutions, etc.) are exempt from COOL requirements.

USDA/AMS partners with the Division of Measurement Standards to assist in auditing retailer compliance on an annual basis. More information on the USDA COOL Program is available at:

If you have additional questions or concerns, contact USDA by phone at (202) 720-4486 or email to .