After more than a year of uncertainty layered on a depressed farm economy, one of the largest dairy cooperatives in the country hailed today’s passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement by the House of Representatives.
The House approval of legislation to implement the trade deal, known as USMCA, moves it to the Senate, which is likely to take up the legislation early next year.
The three countries signed the agreement in November 2018, but their legislative bodies needed to approve. Mexico has done so and the Canadian legislature is expected to consider the deal next month. Last week, the Trump administration and Democratic leaders in the House said they had agreed on final details.
Brody Stapel, president of Edge and a dairy farmer in Wisconsin, made the following statement.
“This is a good day, for sure. USMCA will secure two of our country’s top dairy export markets while also ensuring strong export opportunities for other agricultural commodities.
“USMCA will maintain tariff-free access into Mexico, our number one dairy export market, and allow for additional market access into Canada while requiring the country to eliminate its unfair Class 6 and 7 milk pricing.
“This agreement has been a long time coming. Our farmers have been fighting through challenging economic conditions for a long time as well. They appreciate the hard work of the administration and lawmakers to shape a trade deal that will provide long-term success and stability for dairy farmers and all of the businesses, families, employees and rural communities that rely on the success of those farmers.
“We now call on the Senate to act with urgency to pass this legislation.”
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Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative provides dairy farmers throughout the Midwest with a powerful voice — the voice of milk — in Congress, with customers and within their communities. Edge, based in Green Bay, Wis., is one of the top cooperatives in the country based on milk volume. More information: www.voiceofmilk.com.