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HomeIndustry NewsR-CALF USA Praises Senate Reversal of USDA Paraguayan Beef Import Rule

R-CALF USA Praises Senate Reversal of USDA Paraguayan Beef Import Rule

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 21, 2024 – Today, the U.S. Senate passed, S.J. Res. 62 a joint resolution of disapproval regarding the Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s (APHIS) final rule allowing beef imports from Paraguay. The rule went into effect on November 14, 2023.

In late February, U.S. Sens. Jon Tester (D-MT) and Mike Rounds (R-SD) filed a joint resolution under the Congressional Review Act (CRA), seeking to overturn the rule. On March 8, the resolution was discharged from its committee and sent to the floor of the Senate for a vote.

On the floor, the senators addressed that the United States has blocked imports of Paraguayan beef since 1997 as Paraguay is not free of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), one of the most contagious diseases known to cattle, hogs, and sheep. They also outlined the implications of allowing these imports including the potential threats to the health and safety of the U.S. cattle herd and food supply.

“The reversal of this Paraguay beef rule will help ensure the safety and health of our U.S. livestock herds, will prevent the $12 to $24 million in losses to U.S. farmers and ranchers that the USDA estimated would befall producers, and it will help maintain the integrity of America’s beef supply,” said R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard.

The resolution seeks to reverse USDA’s final rule and ensures the rule shall have no force or effect, meaning Paraguayan beef will remain banned from importation into the United States. It must now pass in the House.

The resolution passed by an overwhelming majority vote of 70-25.

Senators who voted for the resolution included: Sens. Baldwin (D-WI), Barrasso (R-WY), Blackburn (R-TN), Blumenthal (D-CT), Boozman (R-AR), Braun (R-IN), Britt (R-AL), Brown (D-OH), Budd (R-NC), Cantwell (D-WA), Collins (R-ME), Cornyn (R-TX), Cortez Masto (D-NV), Cotton (R-AR), Cramer (R-ND), Crapo (R-ID), Cruz (R-TX), Daines (R-MT), Ernst (R-IA), Fetterman (D-PA), Fischer (R-NE), Gillibrand (D-NY), Graham (R-SC), Grassley (R-IA), Hassan (D-NH), Hawley (R-MO), Hickenlooper (D-CO), Hirono (D-HI), Hoeven (R-ND), Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Johnson (R-WI), Kennedy (R-LA), King (I-ME), Klobuchar (D-MN), Lankford (R-OK), Lummis (R-WY), Manchin (D-WV), Marshall (R-KS), McConnell (R-KY), Merkley (D-OR), Moran (R-KS), Murkowski (R-AK), Murray (D-WA), Ossoff (D-GA), Padilla (D-CA), Peters (D-MI), Reed (D-RI), Ricketts (R-NE), Risch (R-ID), Romney (R-UT), Rosen (D-NV), Rounds (R-SD), Rubio (R-FL), Sanders (I-VT), Schatz (D-HI), Schumer (D-NY), Scott (R-FL), Scott (R-SC), Sinema (I-AZ), Smith (D-MN), Tester (D-MT), Thune (R-SD), Tillis (R-NC), Tuberville (R-AL), Vance (R-OH), Warren (D-MA), Whitehouse (D-RI), Wicker (R-MS), Wyden (D-OR), and Young (R-IN).

Senators who voted against the resolution included: Sens. Bennet (D-CO), Booker (D-NJ), Butler (D-CA), Cardin (D-MD), Carper (D-DE), Casey (D-PA), Cassidy (R-LA), Coons (D-DE), Duckworth (D-IL), Durbin (D-IL), Heinrich (D-NM), Kaine (D-VA), Kelly (D-AZ), Lujan (D-NM), Markey (D-MA), Menendez (D-NJ), Murphy (D-CT), Paul (R-KY), Shaheen (D-NH), Stabenow (D-MI), Sullivan (R-AK), Van Hollen (D-MD), Warner (D-VA), Warnock (D-GA), and Welch (D-VT).

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