Ag News

U.S., Canada, Mexico reach trade agreement

On Sept. 30, the United States reached a new trade agreement with Canada to complete negotiations to update the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), including provisions expected to benefit U.S. agricultural producers.

The “announcement regarding the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement is welcome news,” American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall said in a prepared statement. “This was a hard-fought win and we commend the administration for all the efforts to solidify the trading relationships we have with our North American neighbors.”

According to a White House fact sheet, the new agreement, titled the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), includes modern provisions that serve the interests of American workers and businesses. Among the changes are several that the Trump Administration maintains will help U.S. farmers and ranchers. For example, Canada will eliminate its “Class 7” program that allows low-priced dairy ingredients to undersell American dairy products.

Canada will also provide new access for American dairy products, eggs, and poultry.

“Farm Bureau will review the details of the new treaty as they become available, but the elimination of Canada’s Class 7 dairy pricing program is a clear victory for our farmers,” Duvall said. We also now have access to an additional 3.6 percent of Canada’s dairy market, which is even better than what we would have achieved under TPP. Trade is critical to agriculture, especially trade with our two closest neighbors. The USMCA builds on the success our farmers and ranchers have seen from NAFTA.”