IARN — American farmers and ranchers received another reason to celebrate, ahead of Independence Day.
The revised North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), now referred to as the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), took effect today (Wednesday). The updated accord contains key provisions to: Biotechnology, geographical indications, sanitary/phytosanitary measures, dairy, poultry and eggs, wheat, wines and spirits, and fruit.
Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig says the updated pact will greatly benefit agricultural producers and businesses in the state of Iowa.
“When we started to negotiate with Canada and Mexico, we wanted to make sure that something remained in place because Canada and Mexico are Iowa’s number one and number two trading partners – Over six-billion-dollars worth of exports to these two markets. To be able to secure a new trade agreement that locks in access to those markets and expanded access is a great thing for producers and Iowa businesses,” Secretary Naig said.
Secretary Naig adds, “USMCA provides a great foundation,” and others within the industry agree. Mike Paustian, president of the Iowa Pork Producers Association, says, “It’s not possible to overstate the importance of USMCA to Iowa’s pork producers.”
“We export about 27-percent of the pork produced in Iowa. It’s critical for us to have stable trading agreements in place. Canada and Mexico, historically, are two of our best trading partners. Mexico, especially, takes a lot of hams. It helps when we have greater demand for certain parts of the pig in other places. It adds to the value of the pig for all producers, if we can get access to markets and maximize that value,” Paustian said.
Story courtesy of the Iowa Agribusiness Radio Network.