WASHINGTON, DC — U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) and the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) recognize that President Trump’s executive order to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was inevitable. It is disappointing, however, that until an alternative trade policy is established, export opportunities in the promising Pacific Rim markets that could help U.S. wheat farmers at a time when they need it most are very much at risk.
“U.S. wheat farmers depend heavily on export demand to determine their per-bushel income,” said Jason Scott, USW Chairman and a wheat farmer from Easton, Md. “We can compete very effectively in Asian and Latin American markets where the demand for high quality wheat is rapidly increasing and our organizations took a long-view of the benefits TPP held out — a trade agreement that promoted economic growth abroad as a way to grow export sales and prosperity for farmers at home.”
Without TPP or alternative agreements, U.S. farmers will be forced to the sidelines of trade while losing market share in the region to our competitors including Australia, Canada, Russia and the European Union, which have current agreements or are negotiating new ones with countries outside the network of existing U.S. trade agreements,” said Gordon Stoner, NAWG President and a wheat farmer from Outlook, Mont.
USW and NAWG agree that trade agreements must provide the most benefit possible to our own farmers and industries. We continue to support new agreements that expand free, rules-based trade, as TPP would have done, and encourage that agricultural interests be able to continue to provide input into those negotiations.
USW’s mission is to “develop, maintain, and expand international markets to enhance the profitability of U.S. wheat producers and their customers.” USW activities in more than 100 countries are made possible through producer checkoff dollars managed by 19 state wheat commissions and cost-share funding provided by USDA/Foreign Agricultural Service. For more information, visit our website at www.uswheat.org.
NAWG is a federation of 22 state wheat grower associations that works to represent the needs and interests of wheat producers before Congress and federal agencies. Based in Washington, DC, NAWG is grower-governed and grower-funded, and works in areas as diverse as federal farm policy, trade, environmental regulation, agricultural research and sustainability.
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