FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative welcomes the confirmation of U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and is eager to work with him on several key dairy trade issues, beginning with the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
“Mr. Lighthizer’s vast experience and knowledge of global trade will be invaluable, and dairy has a lot at stake in renegotiating NAFTA. Since its conception, NAFTA has truly benefited U.S. dairy,” says David Cooper, General Manager of FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative. “Thanks to NAFTA, our exports to countries such as Mexico and Canada have grown from 2% to 15%, and along the way has increased the value of U.S. dairy.”
Lighthizer’s appointment comes with a full agenda that relates to dairy, including Canada’s problematic milk pricing policy, preventing the loss of common food names, and pursuing growth opportunities in key Asian countries, such as Japan.
“We believe Mr. Lighthizer is the perfect candidate to not only protect current trade relationships, but to also begin expanding on other trade opportunities,” says Cooper. “With an extensive background and decades experience as a trade lawyer, we look forward to working with him for what dairy farmers have on the line when it comes to exports.”
FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative continues to be a voice for Midwest dairy farmers and advocates for fair and balanced trade.
“We are eager to see what Lighthizer can accomplish on behalf of U.S. dairy farmers,” says Cooper.
FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative was established in 2013 and is based in Madison, Wis. The cooperative represents farms in Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana through policy bargaining, dairy marketing services, laboratory testing opportunities and industry promotion.