On the heels of comments from President Donald Trump that his administration may withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), more than 130 food and agricultural organizations have contacted the President to highlight the importance of the trade agreement to the industry and urge him to preserve and build upon that success.
"With the productivity of U.S. agriculture growing faster than domestic demand, the U.S. food and agriculture industry — and the rural communities that depend on it — relies heavily on export markets to sustain prices and revenues," the groups say in a letter sent to President Trump on Tuesday.
Under NAFTA, U.S. food and agricultural exports to Mexico and Canada have more than quadrupled, from $8.9 billion in 1993 to $38.6 billion in 2015.
U.S. corn farmers have benefited substantially from NAFTA. Mexico is the number one market for U.S. corn and the number two market for U.S. distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS). Rising demand for feed and food has created new opportunities for intraregional trade. For instance, poultry and hog producers in Mexico rely heavily on imported feedstuffs to meet their country’s growing demand for meat.
Canada is also a top-ten market for U.S. corn, DDGS, and ethanol. All told, U.S. exports of corn to Mexico and Canada totaled more than 14 million metric tons in the 2015-16 marketing year—a value of $2.68 billion.
Click here to read the full letter.
CommonGround is a group of farmers connecting with consumers through conversations about science and research and personal stories about food and misinformation surrounding farming. Supported by the NCGA and state corn organizations.
The Soil Health Partnership (SHP) is a farmer-led initiative that fosters transformation in agriculture through improved soil health. Administered by NCGA the partnership has more than 220 working farms enrolled in 16 states. SHP’s mission is to utilize science and data to partner with farmers who are adopting conservation agricultural practices that improve the economic and environmental sustainability of the farm.
The Corn Utilization and Technology Conference (CUTC) is a biennial event happening this June. Learn more.