Virus Outbreak One Good Thing Cow Caretakers

FILE - Cows on pasture at the University of Vermont dairy farm eat hay in a Thursday, July 23, 2020 file photo, in Burlington, Vt. The dairy industry has a familiar question for you: “Got milk?” Six years after the popular tagline was retired, “Got milk?” ads are back. The dairy industry is reviving the campaign hoping to prolong the U.S. sales boost milk has gotten during the pandemic. (AP Photo/Lisa Rathk, Filee)

MONTPELIER, Vt. — Four members of Congress from dairy producing states again introduced legislation Thursday to prevent the labeling of products from nuts, seeds and plants as milk, saying it's misleading to consumers.

The bipartisan bill, which has 33 co-sponsors in the U.S. House, calls on the Food and Drug Administration to enforce its regulations that define milk and cream and stop the labeling of plant-based products as milk, yogurt or cheese.

"Only milk comes from a cow — not an almond or coconut or any other fruit or vegetable,” said Idaho U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson, a Republican, in a statement. He said he's been sounding the alarm for years to the FDA for accurate labeling in the dairy industry.

“Dairy farmers, already struggling to survive, are facing a growing threat due to the misleading practice of marketing plant-based products as milk and dairy products,” said Vermont U.S. Rep. Peter Welch, a Democrat.

Idaho Sen. Jim Risch, a Republican, and Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin, a Democrat, reintroduced the legislation along with Welch and Simpson.

An email was sent to the FDA seeking comment. A message was also sent to the Soyfoods Association of North America.

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