For the Week Ending January 25, 2019

January 25, 2019

NPPC LEADS COALITION URGING ADMINISTRATION TO LIFT METALS TARIFFS

A diverse, ad hoc coalition of more than 45 groups representing many sectors of the U.S. economy and led by NPPC this week called for an end to U.S. tariffs on Canadian and Mexican aluminum and steel imports so that America can take advantage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The Trump administration on June 1, 2018, imposed a 25 percent tariff on steel and a 10 percent duty on aluminum imports from Canada and Mexico. Both countries subsequently retaliated against a host of U.S. products. In a letter sent Wednesday to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, business and agricultural organizations urged the administration to lift the metals tariffs so that Canada and Mexico will rescind their duties on U.S. goods. Resolution of the metals tariff dispute will allow the groups to turn their undivided attention to generating congressional support for the USMCA, negotiations on which were concluded last fall. Farmers and food companies have been particularly hard hit by the Canadian and Mexican retaliation. Mexico’s 20 percent punitive tariff on U.S. pork, for example, has inflicted severe financial harm on America’s pork producers. According to Iowa State University economist Dermot Hayes, the Mexican tariff is costing producers $12 per animal, meaning industrywide losses of $1.5 billion annually.

 

NPPC VIDEO DETAILS U.S. PORK INDUSTRY AFRICAN SWINE FEVER PREVENTION EFFORTS NPPC – in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, the Swine Health Information Council and the National Pork Board – is committed to reducing the risk to the U.S. swine herd of contracting foreign animal diseases, including African Swine Fever. With ASF spreading through China and present in other parts of Asia and Europe, U.S. border safeguards and producer precautions never have been more critical, as detailed by NPPC Chief Veterinarian Dr. Liz Wagstrom in this video. For additional resources on the risk presented by ASF and the collaborative efforts from the pork sector to prevent its spread to the U.S. herd, click here.

 

FSA OFFICES REOPEN FOR ADDITIONAL SERVICES

The U.S. Department of Agriculture this week announced the reopening of all Farm Service Agency (FSA) offices, recalling more than 9,700 employees. FSA offices will be open Monday through Friday the weeks of Jan. 28 and Feb. 4. In subsequent weeks, offices will be open Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. During these times, offices will be providing administrative services critical for America’s farmers and ranchers, including pork producers. FSA offices can help with the Market Facilitation Program (MFP), Market Assistance Loans, release of collateral warehouse receipts, Direct and Guaranteed Farm Operating Loans and Emergency Loans, existing Conservation Reserve Program contracts, Sugar Price Support Loans, Dairy Margin Protection Program, Agricultural Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage, Livestock Forage Disaster, Emergency Assistance Livestock, Honey Bees, and Farm-raised Fish Program, Livestock Indemnity Program, Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program, Tree Assistance Program and Remaining Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program payments for processed applications. Farmers needing FSA assistance should contact their local service centers to make an appointment. Additionally, Agriculture Secretary Perdue announced that the deadline to apply for the MFP has been extended to Feb. 14. The original deadline was Jan. 15.

 

WHAT’S AHEAD

2019 NATIONAL PORK INDUSTRY FORUM APPROACHING

The National Pork Industry Forum – NPPC’s annual business meeting – will be held in Orlando, Fla., from March 6-8. During the event, NPPC will elect new officers and members to its board of directors.