Corn, soybean, wheat and sorghum growers recently joined together to announce their support for the U.S.-Canada-Mexico Agreement (USMCA) to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Agriculture’s support for USMCA makes sense. Mexico and Canada account for 25 percent of all corn exports, and in 2016 alone, this market generated $4.1 billion in economic activity and supported 25,000 jobs and 300,000 farms.
For corn farmers, USMCA will solidify a $3.2 billion export market and provide some certainty as farmers begin the hard work of planting and harvesting their crop. Ratifying USMCA will also instill confidence in other nations that the U.S. is a reliable partner and supplier, ensuring U.S. agriculture remains competitive for generations to come.
Withdrawing from the existing NAFTA agreement, closing the U.S.-Mexico border, or implementing other policies that jeopardize the future of this important economic partnership, would be catastrophic for farmers already struggling amid declining profits and devastating natural disasters. Even the threat of such actions creates uncertainty for farmers. The loss of the North American market would amount to a $9.4 billion annual drop in agricultural exports and a $13 billion hit to the farm sector GDP. Simply put, we cannot afford to lose this market.
NCGA continues to press members of Congress to ratify USMCA this year. Farmers can send a message to their representatives in Washington here - https://ncga.com/public-policy/stand-up-for-corn/take-action?vvsrc=%2fcampaigns%2f63590%2frespond
NCGA is taking a series of actions to do our part to help contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the economic fallout it is creating for corn farmers and our customers. Short term, this means instituting policies to protect the health and safety of our stakeholders and the broader communities we serve. Long term, we’re focused on creating solutions to help corn farmers and our customers recover from the financial impacts of this crisis.
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.