Madison, Wis. [May 25, 2021] – FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative applauds the initiative that U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai has taken to proceed with a dispute proceeding over Canada’s administration of dairy tariff rate quotas (TRQs) under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
Canada continues to thwart their trade commitments as outlined in the USMCA. Industry leaders from USDEC and NMPF have continued to rally for support of enforcing Canada’s trade obligations. Thanks to Ambassador Tai’s initiation of this official dispute settlement, a panel will be established to determine whether Canada has been violating its trade obligations. If the panel determines a lack of compliance, the U.S. would then be granted the right to impose retaliatory duties if Canada fails to fix its problematic TRQ administrative practices.
“We are grateful for Ambassador Tai’s leadership on this important issue as U.S. dairy farmers and processors deserve to utilize the full market opportunities that were sought after for them in the USMCA,” says Jeff Lyon, General Manager at FarmFirst. “Now is the time to make it very clear to Canada’s trade leaders – that failure to meet their agriculture trade obligations will have consequences. Canada needs to stop building barriers in spite of the trade agreements they’ve signed and participate as a good trading partner.”
As an ongoing issue, broad bipartisan support has been raised by several members of Congress over the past several months, including a message from the House Ways and Means Committee as well as the Agriculture Committee to Ambassador Tai during trade oversight hearings.
FarmFirst will continue to advocate for full enforcement of Canada’s trade obligations while engaging with Congressional leaders on the importance of this trade issue.
FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative, established in 2013 and based in Madison, Wis., represents farmers in Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois, and Indiana by providing legislative and regulatory advocacy, dairy marketing services, disaster protection, laboratory testing opportunities and industry promotion. Learn more about FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative by visiting: www.FarmFirstDairyCooperative.com.