WCMA, DBA Applaud Unanimous Passage of Truth-in-Labeling Bills, Call for Senate Action

Posted By: Rebekah Sweeney Advocacy, WCMA News,

Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) and Dairy Business Association (DBA) today applauded the Wisconsin State Assembly’s unanimous passage of three bills designed to protect consumers from misleading labels on imitation “dairy” and “meat” products, and called for quick action in the Wisconsin State Senate, and called for quick action in the Wisconsin State Senate, as well.

“Members of the Wisconsin State Assembly sent a strong message today, that consumers deserve to know exactly what they’re buying and serving to their families,” said Dave Buholzer, WCMA President.  “Real dairy milk and cheese deliver superior nutrition, and a taste that can’t be beat – and America’s Dairyland has the opportunity this June Dairy Month to lead the charge for labeling transparency.”

“The time is now for Wisconsin lawmakers to provide clarity in the consumer marketplace, and fairness for dairy farmers, dairy processors and beef producers who have worked hard to establish reputations for delivering safe, nutritious and delicious foods,” said Amy Penterman, DBA President.  “Our thanks go to every single member of the State Assembly for recognizing the importance of this legislation and taking action to support their constituents.”

Assembly Bill 73/Senate Bill 81 and Assembly 74/Senate Bill 83 would prohibit the labeling of food as milk or as a dairy product or ingredient, if the food is not made from the milk of a cow or other hooved mammal. The bills would bring Wisconsin in line with existing but currently unenforced U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulations defining these products.  Assembly Bill 75/Senate Bill 82 would prohibit labeling plant-based meat alternatives and cell-cultured meat alternatives as “meat” or a similar term.

All of the bills enjoy bipartisan support, and – in addition to WCMA and DBA – are backed by Cooperative Network, GrassWorks, Inc., Midwest SouthEastern Equipment Dealers Association, Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Agri-Business Association, Wisconsin Cattlemen's Association, Wisconsin Corn Growers Association, Wisconsin Dairy Products Association, Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation, Wisconsin Farmers Union, and Wisconsin Pork Association.