Poultry, feed industries applaud US-Japan trade deal

Organizations representing the poultry and animal feed industries are expressing optimism following the September 25 signing of the new United States-Japan Trade Agreement.

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(lakshmiprasad | Bigstock.com)
(lakshmiprasad | Bigstock.com)

Organizations representing the poultry and animal feed industries are expressing optimism following the September 25 signing of the new United States-Japan Trade Agreement.

With the agreement, Japan has committed to provide substantial market access to American food and agricultural products by eliminating tariffs, enacting meaningful tariff reductions, or allowing a specific quantity of imports at a low duty (generally zero).

“This agreement between the United States and Japan is a better deal for the entire U.S. economy, but is a particularly big win for our farmers and ranchers,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “When I visited Japan in May for the G20, I made it clear that the U.S. is Japan’s best customer and we felt that relationship was not reciprocal. This agreement helps level the playing field.”

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig was in New York City as President Donald Trump signed a trade deal with Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzō Abe, and Naig participated in the signing ceremony with other agricultural leaders.

“Japan is one of Iowa’s most important trading partners,” said Naig. “Today’s agreement is a win for agriculture and welcome news as our farmers gear up for harvest. By lowering tariffs on agricultural products, Iowa producers can be more competitive in the Japanese market. This deal helps build the momentum we need to ratify USMCA and reach a long-term trade agreement with China.”

Here are reactions from various agriculture organizations:

National Chicken Council

Under the agreement, frozen U.S. poultry will be among the agricultural products that will benefit from staged tariff elimination. 

“Under the U.S.- Japan Trade Agreement, frozen chicken products will receive favorable tariff reductions enabling our products to compete more effectively with those countries in the Trans-Pacific Partnership,” said National Chicken Council President Mike Brown.

“While final details regarding agriculture still need to be worked out, today’s signing is welcome news and we would like to thank President Trump, Secretary Perdue and (U.S. Trade Representative Robert) Lighthizer for their work negotiating trade deals that stand to benefit U.S. chicken.”

According to USDA, U.S. chicken exports to Japan in 2018 were 19,265 metric tons valued at $32.5 million. Fully removing tariffs would stand to benefit the U.S. industry and lead to increased exports of U.S. chicken products.

National Turkey Federation

Joel Brandenberger, president of the National Turkey Federation (NTF), issued the following statement: “NTF applauds the Trump Administration’s success in securing a bilateral trade deal with Japan, one of our nation’s top trade partners and the U.S. turkey industry’s third largest export market. Under this deal, U.S. turkey products will receive favorable tariff reductions, enabling our products to compete more effectively. This relationship delivers on NTF’s substantial efforts to increase access to U.S. turkey products abroad and get more turkey on tables worldwide.”

In 2018, the U.S. turkey industry exported over 17.5 million pounds of turkey products to the Japanese market.

American Feed Industry Association

“I applaud President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for returning to the table to negotiate a bilateral trade deal that will put U.S. agricultural products back on a more-level playing field with its competitors in the region,” said American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) President and CEO Joel G. Newman. “Japan is one of the U.S. animal food industry’s most valuable export markets, representing roughly a third of all exports for feed, feed ingredients and pet food products. As the two countries work toward negotiating an agreement beyond this initial limited trade deal on tariff reductions, we hope that they will address outstanding sanitary and phytosanitary and regulatory issues our industry faces.”

National Corn Growers Association

National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President Lynn Chrisp made the following statement: “Japan has been a strong trading partner and friend for American agriculture, now the second-largest purchaser of U.S. corn. NCGA has long-advocated for an agreement with Japan and, with many farmers struggling amid challenging times in agriculture, this is very welcome news. While we await further details, it seems this phase one agreement will deliver for corn farmers and build upon our successful partnership with Japan.”

North American Meat Institute

“The Meat Institute applauds the Trump Administration for negotiating better access for American beef and pork exports to the critical Japanese market,” said Meat Institute CEO Julie Anna Potts. “The U.S. will now be better positioned to compete with countries in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and the European Union for valuable market share. We also continue to urge Congress to approve the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement and to encourage the Administration to further strengthen negotiations with China and the EU to provide additional certainty for American consumers, workers and meat and poultry processors and producers.”

Despite steep tariffs, last year the U.S. exported more than $3.6 billion in beef and pork to Japan, Potts added.

Ohio Corn & Wheat Growers Association

"Japan is a top export destination for Ohio grains and meat and we are encouraged that a deal has been made to expand access to their market," said Jon Miller, president of the Ohio Corn & Wheat Growers Association. "Japan is also an important market for future ethanol exports and we look forward to providing them a clean-burning, high-octane fuel."

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