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Bipartisan CURD Act seeks to define ‘natural cheese’

Source: CANVA

Bipartisan CURD Act seeks to define ‘natural cheese’

April 11, 2023 1:18 PM CDT

By: Jimmie Kaska

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Civic Media) – Several members of Congress from Wisconsin are proposing legislation that would formally create a definition for natural cheese in labeling cheese products.

Sens. Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin, along with Reps. Mike Gallagher, Scott Fitzgerald, Glenn Grothman and Bryan Steil, introduced the legislation, H.R. 1803, that would define natural cheese in the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

Sen. Johnson, who was also joined in introducing the CURD Act by Republican Sens. Jim Risch and Mike Crapo of Idaho and Mike Braun of Indiana, as well as Democratic Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Peter Welch of Vermont, said that his home state is known for its cheese.

“Codifying the definition of ‘natural cheese’ will allow consumers the necessary information to make informed decisions when purchasing and enjoying the great products of our state,” Johnson said.

Fellow Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin echoed the sentiment about the state’s reputation for dairy products.

“This legislation honors their celebrated products and makes sure consumers know what products on the shelf meet the definition of ‘natural cheese’ and what do not,” Baldwin said.

The CURD, or Codifying Useful Regulatory Definitions, Act was also introduced in the House of Representatives by Rep. Gallagher, who touted Wisconsin’s proud dairy traditions in promoting the legislation.

“Clearly defining what is and isn’t ‘natural cheese’ is a common sense step that promotes transparency in food labeling and recognizes the time, ingredients, and work our dairy industry puts into their products,” Gallagher said.

Rep. Steil called the CURD Act “common-sense legislation,” while Rep. Fitzgerald said that he was looking forward to advocating for the bill to pass.

Natural cheese is defined as cheese made directly from animal milk or other dairy ingredients.

You can read the full text of H.R. 1803 here.

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