Trump floats halt to U.S. cattle imports as pandemic hurts ranchers
- On Tuesday, President Donald Trump said that the U.S. should consider terminating cattle import trade deals to help America’s ranchers who have suffered due to the pandemic.
- “I read yesterday where we take some cattle in from other countries. We have trade deals. I think you should look at terminating those deals,” Trump said. “We have a lot of cattle in this country.” President Trump did not specify which trade deals or countries he was referring to.
- The U.S. imports cattle from Mexico and Canada to supplement domestic supplies at lower prices. If these bans are put into place, trade disputes could reignite.
- Under the newly negotiated North American trade pact, both Canada and Mexico are allowed to import live cattle to the U.S.
- “It was something I wish the president hadn’t said,” said Marty Smith, NCBA president. Mr. Smith attended and spoke at the event. He added that he hoped the comment by President Trump was a misunderstanding.
President Donald Trump addresses beef imports during NCBA White House visit
- NCBA’s CEO Colin Woodall feels that President Trump’s statement regarding the termination of cattle imports shows the complexity of the U.S. beef business.
- Woodall feels that if President Trump is serious about reconsidering import decisions, NCBA and it’s members would like him to take another look at his decision to allow fresh beef imports from nations like Brazil where foot and mouth disease is a serious concern.
- Woodall went on to explain that international beef trade is essential to our industry. Undervalued cuts such as hearts, tongues, and livers are exported. Lean trim is imported for ground beef production.
- Woodall closed in saying that it is more important for President Trump to re-examine the decision to import beef from Brazil, Namibia, and other nations where food safety and/or animal health concerns could directly impact American consumers and/or cattle producers.
U.S. Cattlemen’s Association respond to coronavirus food assistance program
- USCA’s President Brooke Miller said on Tuesday that the organization welcomes the relief provided through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program as many farmers and ranchers are struggling with the economic pressure.
- Miller went on to say that USCA greatly appreciates President Trump’s comments on the need to halt the influx of imported cattle into the U.S.
- “Our nation’s strength lies in our ability to produce a safe, abundant, and affordable food supply. We need to preserve this food security by creating opportunities for U.S. agricultural producers to thrive,” said Miller.
Boxed beef prices continue to correct
- Choice boxed beef: $409.47 (-$5.48)
- Select boxed beef: $388.87 (-$6.00)