Last year, U.S. pork exports to Mexico totaled $1.3 billion and exports to Canada totaled $765 million.

December 20, 2019

2 Min Read
USMCA illustration
Getty Images/iStockphoto

Pork producers across the United States are praising lawmakers after the swift passage of the U.S.-Canada-Mexico Agreement Thursday. The House of Representatives voted 385-41 to pass the trade deal which will replace the North American Free Trade Agreement. 

Minnesota's pig farmers and the Minnesota Pork Producers Association applauded Minnesota Representatives who voted in favor of the USMCA.

"We thank the Minnesota representatives in Congress who voted yes on the USMCA agreement," says Greg Boerboom, a pig farmer from Marshall and president of the Minnesota Pork Producers Association. "This agreement will bring much-needed trade certainty to farmers who have been impacted by ongoing trade disputes. USMCA is a win for Minnesota pig farmers and American agriculture."

Pork exports to Mexico and Canada support 16,000 U.S. jobs. Last year, U.S. pork exports to Mexico totaled $1.3 billion and exports to Canada totaled $765 million.

Dottie King, president-elect of the Oklahoma Pork Council board of directors, says finalizing the USMCA is a tremendous positive for Oklahoma pig farmers.

"Oklahoma's hog farmers greatly appreciate the leadership shown by Oklahoma's Congressional delegation in supporting USMCA and voting yes on USMCA," says King. "Mexico represents one of the largest export markets for Oklahoma pork." The council is now encouraging Oklahoma Senators to also vote yes on the deal.

Iowa Pork Producers Association president Trent Thiele echoes King's comments.

"Exports are important to Iowa and U.S. pig farmers, and that's why we applaud the U.S. House for taking action to ratify the USMCA agreement negotiated by the Trump administration. We especially want to thank all four of Iowa's U.S. House of Representative members for voting for the agreement," Thiele says. "Our industry has worked many years in developing valuable international trading relationships that have fueled Iowa's rural economy and helped offset the U.S. trade deficit. It is important to me and Iowa's other pig farmers that we return to those good working relationships we have had with Mexico and Canada."

When combined, the joint Mexico and Canada market has consistently purchased 40% of U.S. pork exports when there was a trade agreement between the three countries.

"This agreement will protect Iowa's pork producers from being caught in the middle, as we were in 2018 and through the first half of 2019. Economic estimates have said we lost $12 per pig during that time period because of tariff issues," Thiele says. "We now encourage the U.S. Senate to work quickly to also approve the USMCA."

The Senate vote is not expected until after the New Year.

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