President Trump Ponders Termination of Trade Deals Dealing with Cattle Imports

Tuesday, USDA released details on the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). During  President Donald Trump’s remarks on the program, he laid out key details of the $16 billion program that will be distributed directly to farmers.   

President Trump went off-script during his comments to address imported beef. “I read yesterday where we take some cattle in from other countries because we have trade deals, I think you should look at terminating those deals”. 

Marty Smith, President of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), joined the President and other leaders in the industry for the announcement. Smith discussed the comments President Trump made on Adams on Agriculture Wednesday. 

“First off I was absolutely in shock, I was standing 6 feet away in a socially responsible manner from the President and as someone said  ‘Marty you could have stopped him and I didn’t find it appropriate to tap him on the shoulder and say what are we talking about here?’” 

Smith noted live animals are only coming from Canada and Mexico. “And those imports are pursuant through USMCA that is the president’s program,” Smith says what NCBA has encouraged the White House to pursue is meat imports from Brazil, not cattle imports. 

Smith says “we will be working with administration and USDA as we have. But again, for the standpoint of our producers to understand, to the extent of there are any live cattle imports they are Mexico and Canada and that is pursuant to the treaty that the president takes pride in.”