U.S. and Latin America Pledge to Work to Promote Science-Based Food and Agriculture Regulations
Luke Waring, USDEC
Randall Cordero, IICA
ARLINGTON, VA - The U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) today announced a new partnership designed to strengthen collaboration between the U.S. and IICA to promote science-based regulations and policies affecting trade in food and agricultural products.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by USDEC and IICA will deepen coordination between the organizations to advance development and adoption of science-based international standards. USDEC and IICA will also partner on initiatives that support training of scientists throughout the hemisphere to increase readiness, promote food safety, and proactively combat non-scientific regulations that negatively impact dairy products.
"We are delighted to be a small part of the great work that IICA already does in promoting science-based regulations and to support their engagement with experts in Central and South America on technical issues," said Jaime Castaneda, USDEC's senior vice president of trade policy. "Strengthening these relationships will provide additional tools for countries in the region to accomplish IICA's shared goals: promoting science-based regulations and enhancing scientific excellence in food and agriculture."
Additionally, the MOU will seek to promote the adoption of outcomes-based policies and practices that enhance food safety, improve animal health and welfare, and facilitate fair practices in trade throughout Latin America.
"This agreement will play a crucial role in bolstering IICA's efforts to harmonize the implementation of science-based health, safety and quality standards for food," said Manuel Otero, Director General of IICA. "It is important to foster new agreements with the private sector in order to broaden the impact of actions carried out for the benefit of agriculture and rural communities ," he added.
"USDEC continues to build partnerships around the world to ensure that science-based regulations prevail over unjustified barriers intended to impede international trade," said Tom Vilsack, USDEC president and CEO. "Our partnership with IICA will help IICA increase communication among their member nations and allow the Americas to fight to preserve the scientific basis of international food standards with one voice."
The MOU signed with IICA will complement the agreement USDEC previously signed with the Pan American Dairy Federation (FEPALE) and provide USDEC with an additional channel to communicate and engage with stakeholders in Latin America.
The U.S. Dairy Export Council is a non-profit, independent membership organization that represents the global trade interests of U.S. dairy producers, proprietary processors and cooperatives, ingredient suppliers and export traders. Its mission is to enhance U.S. global competitiveness and assist the U.S. industry to increase its global dairy ingredient sales and exports of U.S. dairy products. USDEC accomplishes this through programs in market development that build global demand for U.S. dairy products, resolve market access barriers and advance industry trade policy goals. USDEC is supported by staff across the United States and overseas in Mexico, South America, Asia, Middle East and Europe. The U.S. Dairy Export Council prohibits discrimination on the basis of age, disability, national origin, race, color, religion, creed, gender, sexual orientation, political beliefs, marital status, military status, and arrest or conviction record. www.usdec.org.
As the specialized agency of the Inter-American System for agriculture, the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) supports the efforts of the Member States to achieve agricultural development and rural well-being. Our mission is to encourage, promote and support our Member States in their efforts to achieve agricultural development and rural well-being through international technical cooperation of excellence. Our vision is to create a competitive, inclusive and sustainable inter-American agriculture that feeds the hemisphere and the world, while at the same time generating opportunities to reduce hunger and poverty among farmers and rural dwellers. For more information, please visit http://iica.int/en