President Trump has announced an agreement in principle that will greatly improve access for U.S. red meat in Japan – the largest value destination for U.S. pork and beef exports. Reports are that the agreement could be signed by the end of September.

The agreement with Japan will allow the US access to lower tariffs rates that are currently available to countries in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). The deal will lower tariffs for U.S. beef over time from the current level of 38.5% down to 9%. It will reportedly also lower tariffs on pork and other ag goods.

In response to the announcement U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) President and CEO Dan Halstrom issued this statement:

“This announcement is tremendous news for U.S. farmers and ranchers, and for everyone in the red meat supply chain, because it will level the playing field for U.S. pork and beef in the world’s most competitive red meat import market. It is also a very positive development for our customer base in Japan, which USMEF and our industry partners have spent decades building. These customers have been very loyal to U.S. pork and beef, but our exports to Japan could not reach their full potential under Japan’s current tariff structure.”

“USMEF thanks the Trump administration for prioritizing trade negotiations with Japan, and especially the officials at USTR and USDA who worked tirelessly to secure this agreement. Favorable access to Japan is a major win, not only for the U.S. red meat industry but for all of U.S. agriculture and for our nation’s rural economy.”

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) President Jennifer Houston also issued a statement on this significant victory for U.S. ranchers:

“Today is an exciting day for America’s cattlemen and cattlewomen. President Trump and his trade team have delivered another great victory for the U.S. beef industry by expanding market access to Japan, our top export market. Last year, Japanese consumers purchased over $2 billion of U.S. beef, accounting for roughly one-quarter of overall U.S. beef exports. Removing the massive 38.5 percent tariff on U.S. beef will level the playing field in Japan, and we are very thankful to President Trump and his trade team for continuing to fight on behalf of America’s ranching families.”

Check back on this article in the future as we’ll continue to add more information as it becomes available.

 

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