(WASHINGTON) - The United States Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) responded to news this week regarding two critical international trade policies for U.S. cattle producers.
USCA President Kenny Graner commented on discussions that took place between United States Department of Agriculture Secretary Perdue and his Brazilian counterpart Blairo Maggi, “The recent ban on Brazilian beef imports to the U.S. must be upheld. USCA has remained opposed to Brazilian Beef imports to the U.S. from the start and the facts are now there, a large number of shipments did not pass U.S. safety standards.”
“USCA asks the USDA and the Administration to oppose any requests from Brazil to reopen access for Brazilian beef products. Brazil has proven it cannot adhere to the strict protocols in place by the U.S. and the safety of the U.S. cattle herd will be at risk if we once again open our doors to trade with the country.”
President Graner also commented on the renegotiation of NAFTA and the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR) release of its Summary of Objectives for the agreement, “The renegotiation of NAFTA was supported by USCA as a means to revisit and apply current trade protocols and measures to an outdated agreement. However, as reports this week have shown, it appears that U.S. cattle producers will once again be left on the sidelines of a fair trade deal.”
“Notably absent in USTR’s summary of objectives is country of origin labeling. Consumers have spoken; U.S. cattle producers have spoken; all signs point toward accurate and reliable origin information as needed in today’s marketplace. NAFTA negotiations had an opportunity to address this and provide a real win yet key items were left out of the conversation. USTR can still make these changes and USCA requests for this to take place in the days ahead.”
“USCA is committed to representing our country’s cattle producers and we will continue to do so on both of these issues. Brazil beef is not suitable for reentry and origin information is needed for consumer and producer confidence. We will work to further both of these issues in discussions as they move forward.”
Established in March 2007, USCA is committed to enhancing and expanding the cattle industry’s voice on Capitol Hill. USCA has a full-time presence in Washington, giving cattle producers across the country a strong influence on policy development. For more information go to www.uscattlemen.org.