International Trade

Earlier this afternoon, Chairman Larry Cox of Lawrence Cox Ranches [Brawley, Calif.] concluded the quarterly Western Growers Board of Directors meeting in Newport Beach, Calif. Following committee meetings on Wednesday, the full board convened this morning to address major policy items impacting the competitiveness and profitability of the Arizona, California and Colorado fresh produce industry.

Key points of discussion from each of the committee meetings include:

Legislative

Jeff Janas

Due to recent Maximum Residue Limits (MRL) violations on several export shipments, Western Growers reminds members that while the U.S. may have established tolerances on a particular pesticide/fungicide, other countries’ threshold limits may be lower or non-established.

 Such violations will not only place the individual shipper on enhanced surveillance, but in many cases the importing country will increase the surveillance of the entire industry.

Yesterday, the International Trade Commission (ITC) released an analysis of the likely impact of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement on the U.S. economy. The release prompted Western Growers’ President and CEO Tom Nassif to issue a statement reiterating our support for the trade deal which would achieve a higher level of fairness between American farmers and their TPP trading partners through tariff reductions and potentially more favorable Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures.

Jeff Janas

Due to recent Maximum Residue Limits (MRL) and cadmium standard violations on shipments to Taiwan, Western Growers reminds members that while the U.S. may have established tolerances on a particular pesticide/fungicide, other countries’ threshold limits may be lower or non-established. Such violations will not only place the individual shipper on enhanced surveillance, but in many cases will increase the surveillance of the entire industry when exporting to Taiwan.

Jeff Janas

Trade is top of mind for many companies. In 2015, Congress debated and passed Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), providing the executive branch with the flexibility to craft trade deals and Congress with the ability to streamline their review and passage. Negotiations with member countries of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) also concluded in late 2015, paving the way for Congress to approve the massive trade agreement in 2016 which is expected to provide a significant boost to the U.S. economy as well as U.S.-based companies doing business overseas.

Jeff Janas

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