The Florida Ag Department and Commissioner Nikki Fried are strongly encouraging producers to submit comments for the upcoming field hearings on unfair produce trade with Mexico. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative recently announced virtual field hearings will take place on August 13 and 20. Growing Produce Dot Com says these hearings will allow the Commerce Department and the Trump Administration an opportunity to hear from Florida’s seasonal produce growers on the urgent need for federal action on unfair foreign trade. “The concerns of Florida’s farmers with the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement remain the same as when NAFTA was renegotiated two years ago,” says Fried. “The deal lacks protections against unfair trade practices that devastated our state’s produce growers.” With the USTR hearings scheduled for August, Commissioner Fried says now is the time for Florida’s growers and others affected by unfair foreign trade to make their voices heard. “Our farmers are the best in the world and deserve a level playing field to compete on,” she adds. A Florida Department of Ag report shows that imported Mexican produce has caused more than $3.7 billion in losses for U.S. producers since 2000. Mexico has expanded its share of the U.S. domestic market by 217 percent in that time.