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USDEC and NMPF Advocate for Enhanced Dairy Trade Opportunities at USTR Hearing


Jerry Brown, USDEC
EMAIL: jbrown@usdec.org

ARLINGTON, VA – Tony Rice, Trade Policy Director for the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) and the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) will testify this afternoon before the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) on how U.S. trade policy can strengthen supply chain resiliency and ensure that U.S. dairy continues to grow as a global leader.

The U.S. dairy industry exported more than $8 billion worth of products in 2023, supporting thousands of jobs and contributing significantly to the national economy. Rice in his testimony will highlight the need for a more proactive U.S. trade policy agenda that aggressively tackles global trade barriers and enhances market access to key partners.

“An inclusive, worker-centered trade policy should reflect the central role that comprehensive trade agreements and American exports play for the agricultural economy and the many farmers and workers throughout the supply chain who rely on it,” Rice says in his prepared statement. “Expanding export sales does not only support America’s farms, but also traditionally underserved workers in rural communities and in companies supplying inputs and services, in downstream food manufacturing plant jobs, and in cities with large port facilities heavily dependent on trade.”

Rice also recommends that USTR incorporate dairy-specific elements in trade negotiations, drawing on the precedent set by annexes for wine in various agreements, or the broad recognition of the U.S. regulatory system for processed foods including dairy in the U.S.-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement.

“Such steps would facilitate smooth, more reliable and robust dairy supply chains with our trading partners,” Rice says in his statement.

Find USDEC and NMPF’s full testimony here


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.