Ag Groups Want More Action on New Trade Opportunities

Agriculture groups recently came together during a Farmers for Free Trade roundtable to talk about trade. They all expressed frustration that the Biden administration hasn’t initiated any new trade talks. The groups are especially interested in more Southeast Asian opportunities as more and more countries show interest in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for the Trans-Pacific Partnership, formerly known as TPP. A DTN report says that while ag exports have hit record levels, they want the administration to look into getting back into the 11-country trade deal. U.S. agriculture closed out the fiscal year 2021 with a USDA projection of $175.3 billion in final sales, almost $34 billion higher than the previous fiscal year. Joe Glauber (GLAW-ber), a one-time chief economist for the USDA and former ag trade negotiator, says while the U.S. was involved in trade wars during recent years or renegotiating old agreements, America’s competitors weren’t sitting by and watching. “Unfortunately, we decided to leave TPP, but the rest of those countries got an agreement,” Glauber says. “We found ourselves trying to figure out what to do with markets like Japan, which we need, and our competitors now have better access to than we do.”