December 16, 2019

Western Growers Statement on U.S.-China Phase One Trade Agreement

IRVINE, Calif. (December 16, 2019) – In response to the announcement that the U.S. and China have reached an agreement on a Phase One trade deal, Western Growers President & CEO Tom Nassif issued the following statement:

“President Trump is following through on his promise to rebalance the relationship between the U.S. and many of our global trading partners. In the wake of the early harvest trade deal with Japan and the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, the phase one trade deal with China represents another encouraging step forward in the effort to level the playing field for American farmers in this important market.

“We are excited to hear from the Administration that the deal is to include not only substantial increases in agricultural purchases by China and a return to normal, but also commitments to address China’s non-tariff barriers. Non-scientifically based sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) standards have been used too often to deny access of American product to the Chinese market, and we’ve long urged that this problem be resolved. We look forward to reviewing additional details of the phase one deal and working with the Administration to ensure the deal delivers wins for our fruit, vegetable and tree nut growers.

“While U.S. agriculture has borne the brunt of the trade war with China, many of our farmers understand that, at times, short term pain must be endured to achieve long term gains and appreciate the efforts of President Trump to offset the damages incurred by our industry through trade mitigation assistance programs.

“Nevertheless, no amount of government aid can make up for lost market shares or displacement by competing suppliers. For this reason, we urge the Administration to quickly finalize and implement this deal, bringing us one step closer to restoring market access and getting back to normal for American fruit vegetable and tree nut producers.”

About Western Growers:
Founded in 1926, Western Growers represents local and regional family farmers growing fresh produce in Arizona, California, Colorado and New Mexico. Our members and their workers provide half the nation’s fresh fruits, vegetables and tree nuts, including half of America’s fresh organic produce. For generations we have provided variety and healthy choices to consumers. Connect with and learn more about Western Growers on our Twitter and Facebook