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Published February 02 2014

Forum editorial: Opponents of COOL get spurge

LEAFY SPURGE: To cattle industry organizations that are opposed to Country of Origin Labeling on meat sold in the U.S. The label requires beef and other meats to be identified as “Product of the U.S.A.” In part, it’s become a big guys versus small guys issue with the big operators seemingly doing the bidding of big feedlot owners and meat processors, who don’t want COOL to stand because in their production they integrate beef, pork, etc., from domestic and foreign sources. But in practice, COOL is a consumer imperative that has legs or, if you will, hooves. It’s no different from “gluten free,” or “no trans fats,” or “whole grain” or “calorie content” information on fast-food and restaurant menus. More and more, American consumers want to know not only what is in their food, but also where it comes from. At a time when beef consumption is not growing at the same rate of the U.S. population, it is foolish for elements of the cattle industry and meatpackers to ignore consumer trends.

PRAIRIE ROSES: To the Fargo Parking Authority’s focus on improving the parking situation downtown, this time by trying a four-hour zone in a few blocks of the central district. It might not be a permanent change, but going to four hours instead of the current 90-minute limit is a worthy experiment. The commission might find that on balance there is no net gain from a 90-minute limit because motorists move to another block, thus using up another parking slot. So why not just allow them to park where they are initially for four hours? It’s more convenient for motorists. No one tweak or change will solve all downtown parking problems, but a combination of remedies might be the answer.


Forum editorials represent the opinion of Forum management and the newspaper’s Editorial Board.